LOXLEY, Alabama — For the second year in a row, the Baldwin County Strawberry Festival in Loxley has been cancelled over concerns due to the Coronavirus.
On Thursday, Jan. 7, the Baldwin County Strawberry Festival Committed posted a message on its Facebook page, stating that the 2021 Festival, which would have been held April 10-11 at Loxley Municipal Park, had been cancelled.
“We had hoped progress toward a (COVID-19) solution would have allowed us to host the event but many, if not more, of the same restrictions that caused 2020s cancellation are still in effect,” according to the post. “We know every one of us has been impacted in some form whether as serious as a loved one being sick or as simple as missing the festival.”
According to its website, baldwincountystrawberryfestival.org, the festival began in 1987 as a result of a unified effort between ARC of County and Loxley Elementary School. Over the years, it has grown from a few craft and food vendors to hosting over 180 arts and crafts exhibitors, a dozen different food vendors, including the festival’s signature strawberry shortcake; a carnival, children’s games, an antique auto show, exhibits and live music. Every year the festival sees more than 50,000 visitors and is staffed with more than 200 volunteers.
The festival was held the first Saturday in May until 1996, when it was changed to the second weekend in April, moving from downtown Loxley to the Loxley Municipal Park in 1999.
According to the website, the festival raised over $48,000 each year for its two beneficiaries.
“Proceeds from the festival have helped both benefitting organizations to fund daily operations,” according to the website.
In March of 2020, in the wake of Gov. Kay Ivey’s Stay at Home order, the festival was cancelled, along with the Little Miss Strawberry Beauty Pageant, open to second grade girl attending Baldwin County public or private schools. There was no information regarding the pageant in the Jan. 7 post.
“Our prayer is that you and your family are safe and healthy and that all of us can resume more normal activity soon - including the Strawberry Festival,” according to the post. “Thank you for your understanding.”