The 84th annual Strawberry Festival will take place from Thursday, February 28 to Sunday, March 10.

The 84th annual Strawberry Festival promises to be a ‘berry’ sweet time for those in attendance.

This year, it takes place from Thursday, February 28 to Sunday, March 10. Enjoy 11 days of family-friendly entertainment which includes fair food delights, concerts, rides, stage shows, attractions and exhibits.

The Festival represents the fabric of American life which is woven into the Festival through its social events, contests, youth programs, top-name entertainment and parades with glorious floats and marching bands. It continues to preserve and enhance the agricultural and historical legacy of the Florida strawberry.

Gates open at 10 a.m. and close at 10 p.m. daily. Midway times vary. General admission is $10 for ages 13 and up. Children 5 and under are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult. Children 6 to 12 require a youth ticket purchase of $5.

Each year, more than 500,000 visitors enjoy all the Festival offers, including its signature strawberry shortcake.

Other ways to enjoy Plant City’s fresh strawberries while visiting include Strawberry Fudge, Strawberry Fritters, Strawberry Kettle Korn, Strawberry Cream Puffs, Deep Fried Strawberry Cheese Burst as well as lots of other fair foods for you to feast on.

Kendall Gaudens, a senior at Plant City High School, was crowned the 2019 Florida Strawberry Festival Queen from a field of 31 contestants. She, along with First Maid Madilyn Conrad and court members Kennedy Cullins, Jada Brown and Olivia Frazier, can be seen at festival events throughout the grounds, including on the Wish Farms Soundstage before each of the 24 headline entertainment shows and at community events throughout the year.

“Once again, we have an outstanding group of young ladies who will represent us well for the 84th year,” said President Paul Davis.

There is no place better than the Strawberry Festival to catch some of your favorite concerts. Favorites such as Alabama, Willie Nelson, Kool & The Gang, Styx, Martina McBride, Chris Janson and Old Dominion will take to the Wish Farms Soundstage.

Reserved seats for headline entertainment shows are available at the Amscot Main Ticket Gate located at 2209 W. Oak Ave., in Plant City. An additional ticket office located on the SW corner of the TECO Expo Hall will be open during the Festival to sell any remaining reserved seat tickets.

With your paid admission, there is also a lot of free entertainment to enjoy.

In the Publix Showcase Tent, Dennis Lee takes the stage daily at 12 Noon, 2 and 4 p.m. most days. The 2019 Florida Strawberry Festival Battle of the Bands will take place Thursday, February 28, Tuesday, March 5 and Thursday, March 7 at 6 p.m.

In the Kellogg’s Strawberry Tent, you can watch Kari & Billy daily at 12 Noon, 4 and 7 p.m.; Kazual daily at 1, 3 and 6 p.m. and The Walker Boys daily at 2 and 5 p.m.

All around the grounds there is plenty to check out, including the Paul Bunyan Lumberjacks vs. Lumberjills daily at 12 Noon, 2 and 4 p.m. Additional 6 p.m. shows are on Saturdays and Sundays. The Pompeyo Dog Show takes place daily at 12:30, 3:30 and 5:30 p.m., and enjoy the silly fun at the Robinson’s Racing Pigs, which runs daily at 11 a.m., 12 Noon, 2, 4, 6 and 8 p.m.

Youth Livestock Shows will take place throughout the Festival days.

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Michelle has been with the Osprey Observer for almost nine years, and her current position is Assignment Editor. She resides in Bloomingdale with her husband Phil, two sons, Philip and Matthew, and Tigger the cat.