|By Bob Weaver 2001|
Molasses maker Deward Offutt
The 34th annual West Virginia Molasses Festival opened with slightly chilly weather yesterday.
Molasses maker Deward Offutt of Millstone arrived to gear-up the molasses mill, pressing the
cane squeezins' and processing the sugary syrup.
Offutt has contributed to the project since it started, bringing with him the old time skill to make
the popular product. Offutt said his long-time partner "Pete (referring to Pete Bush) hasn't been
up to par this week, but I went up to make sure it was o.k. to go ahead without him." Molasses
will be for sale through Saturday.
Some really good country music
They would really like this in Australia
Dozens of out-of-state campers, mostly former Calhouners, had found their spot on the lower
end of the field, and the crowd was picking up by 7 p.m. The festival is a county fair, molasses
squeezin' and homecoming, rolled into one.
Quilts, canned food, fresh produce, pictures and lots of crafts had already gone on display, and
many of the products had already received ribbons. The fairway was open with dozens of
booths and several rides, but receiving most attention was food. Lots of food.
Fresh from the vine
The evening progressed with the crowning of the King and Queen of the Molasses Festival and
a Pretty Baby Contest.
Today's events include a molasses making demonstration with music on the outdoor stage. A
sausage and pancake supper is scheduled from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., followed by gospel music
starting at 7 p.m.
Zella Boone's "Best of Show" quilt
Saturday is parade day with the Grand Parade starting at 1 p.m. The Calhoun High School Red
Devil Band will perform, along with dozen of entries. The parade travels west on U.S. 33-119
past the Molasses Festival grounds. There will be a volleyball tournament along with youth
activities starting at 10 a.m. Judging of horses and wagons at noon.
The chicken barbecue will begin serving at 11 a.m. Music for the day will be country and
bluegrass. Most importantly will be visitin' time, returning to the community and renewing old