One of the juiciest days of summer is less than two weeks away.
Held every second Saturday in August at Jeff Davis Park, the Rush Springs Watermelon Festival is a tradition for Grady County residents.
The festivities begin long before hungry watermelon fans gobble up free slices on the afternoon of the festival.
On Thursday evening, Aug. 8, the carnival opens at 6 p.m. and the rodeo kicks off at 8 p.m. On Friday, Aug. 9, the Rush Springs Watermelon Festival Rodeo Parade begins at 5 p.m. in downtown Rush Springs. The carnival will open again at 6 p.m. and another rodeo will take place at 8 p.m.
The activities will grind down to the rind on the day of the Watermelon Festival, Aug. 10.
Runners may want to get to the festival early. At 7:30 a.m., the 5k, 10k and 5k watermelon relay will begin. Runners can register online via the Rush Springs Watermelon Festival Run Facebook. There is a $5 early bird discount through July 29.
At 9 a.m., the opening ceremonies will begin with Little Miss Oklahoma Kristin Boles and the Lion Club Awards will be distributed.
After that, there will be several entertaining acts throughout the day, a watermelon seed spitting contest, a prize watermelon auction and more.
A tentative schedule is as follows:
- 9 a.m.: Opening ceremonies
- 9:30 a.m.: Tiny Tots
- 11:45: Tiny Tots winners announced
- Noon: Watermelon seed spitting contest
- 1 p.m.: Morgan White
- 1:30 p.m.: John Berry
- 2:15 p.m.: Jon Williams and The Coin Toss Blue Grass
- 3 p.m. : Brian Dunning, Elvis tribute artist
- 4 p.m.: Free watermelon feed, Mike McAdoo Branson plays guitar
- 5 p.m. Prize Watermelon Auction
- 5:30 p.m. Gospel Travelers, Mike McAdoo
- 7 p.m.: Coronation of the Watermelon Queen and Tiny Tots