By Tammy Sue Struble
The Dade City Chamber of Commerce will host its “most popular and unique event” this weekend, the annual Kumquat Festival.
The event begins with an open house on Thursday, Jan. 27 and Friday, Jan. 28 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Kumquat Growers, 31647 Gude Road. The event then moves on Friday night to the Pasco County Fairgrounds, with a barbecue chicken dinner from 5-7 p.m. at Clayton Hall. The dinner is take-out or eat-in, with tickets available at the chamber office at 14112 Eighth St.
Festivities then shift into downtown Dade City for the actual festival, scheduled for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 29. The event is the chamber’s largest fundraiser of the year, and it’s packed with things to do for all ages.
Start out by going to the Armory at 38017 East Live Oak Ave and pick up a map of the event. It will list locations of food, entertainment, and activities. There will be vendors, an antique car show, a kids’ corral, family fun walk, Relay For Life 5K race and a no-K race, entertainment and food.
The Kumquat festival Family Fun Walk is sponsored by the Suncoast Sandpipers Volkssport Club. They will have a 5K and 10K walk rated “easy” through historic Dade City and the Kumquat Festival.
The Relay For Life of San Antonio is sponsoring a 5K race and a no-K race. Their “Race for Hope” is in honor of Jack Jones, a Marine Corps veteran, and all U.S. military with a portion of the proceeds going to the American Cancer Society.
Earlier in January, a Kumquat Recipe Contest revealed several interesting kumquat dishes. In the category of Breakfast and Beyond, Alison Graham of Dade City took first place with a kumquat cake roll. For dessert, Jo Uber of Zephyrhills created a drink called kumquatcello for first place, and Bill White of Trilby won second place with deep dish kumquat pie. The new edition of the Kumquat Recipe Cookbook from 1998-2011 is available at the chamber for $10.
For more information contact the Dade City Chamber at (352) 567-3769 or www.dadecitychamber.org and click on Kumquat Festival.
What is a kumquat?
Kumquats have been called “the little gold gems of the citrus family.” They are believed to be native to China. There are four varieties.
Kumquats have a very distinctive taste. It is the only citrus fruit that can be eaten “skin and all.” The peel is the sweetest part and can be eaten separately. The pulp contains the seeds and juice, which is sour. When eaten together, you get a sweet and sour taste. The seeds, however, should not be eaten. They are similar to the seed of the orange and have a distinctive green color. The seeds also contain pectin, which can be removed by boiling for use in making jams and jellies.
-Kumquat Growers Inc.
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