Festival Honors Claremore Tradition

Some people still don’t know that Lynn Riggs, one of Claremore’s favorite sons, wrote the original story “Green Grows the Lilacs.”

By: Susan Erler | Category: Recreation/Leisure | Issue: April 2010

The annual Derby Dog Weiner Dog Race is one of the many fun and exciting events at Claremore’s Lilac Festival.

The annual Derby Dog Weiner Dog Race is one of the many fun and exciting events at Claremore’s Lilac Festival.

Believe it or not, there are still some people who don’t know that Lynn Riggs, one of Claremore’s favorite sons, wrote the original story “Green Grows the Lilacs,” which became the classic Broadway play and movie “Oklahoma.” This original story is now being honored in grand fashion with the upcoming Claremore Lilac Festival.

The Lilac Festival is scheduled for Saturday, May 1, 2010 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. throughout Claremore’s downtown area. This free community event is made possible through a partnership of the Claremore Chamber of Commerce, Claremore Main Street and the Claremore Convention & Visitors Bureau. Main sponsors for the festival include GRDA, BNSF Railways and Union Pacific Railroad.

Fun, family activities will take place throughout the day with something for everyone and for guests of all ages. “We will have entertainment all day long on our music stage, children’s inflatables, and a master gardener plant sale,” states Main Street Director Cindy Bissett. “And this is just a small sampling of all the great activities we have scheduled!” (There will be a small fee for the children’s inflatables.)

One of the main attractions will be the Master Gardener Plant Sale. They will be selling many different types of plants including flowers and shrubs. This is a great time to purchase the perfect plants for your yard and get expert advice at the same time.

The “Care More for Claremore” group will be selling lilac bushes during the festival. The sizes vary with prices ranging from $15 to $25 per bush. Don’t miss out! Guests can pre-order bushes by calling the Claremore Main Street office at (918) 341-5881.

Probably the most popular and entertaining event is the “Derby Dog Weiner Dog Race.” The race pays homage to the Kentucky Derby and is always a big hit. Entry fee is $10, and prizes and trophies will be awarded in many different categories. For more information or to enter, please contact the Claremore Chamber office at (918) 341-2818.

Other fabulous activities to enjoy are an old-fashioned cake walk, arts and crafts vendors, and several other crafting booths for the kids to enjoy. BNSF will be sponsoring an area for children to make and take mini railroad engines and Mother’s Day cards, and enjoy face painting. Adults can have fun admiring the fourth grade public school box car art contest. Local fourth grade classes have each painted and decorated 4x8 box cars, with the top winner receiving a $100 gift card sponsored by the Claremore Optimist Club.

Union Pacific is sponsoring a contest too. “Banner Tracks” is open to home school and private school students. Participants are asked to decorate a flag, and festival goers will be asked to choose their favorite. A $100 gift card is up for grabs in this contest as well, sponsored by Union Pacific.

Some people just can’t get enough of trains, and the Lilac Festival is the perfect place for them. The Tulsa Garden Railroad Club will be on hand with a working display of garden trains, each sure to delight. You won’t want to miss them!

Three Rivers Art will be there too with a huge selection of local artwork, downtown storefronts will be decorated in a lilac theme, and a food court all combine to make for a fun-filled family outing. Plans are still in progress, so watch for even more activities and vendors to be added. Gospel music lovers will enjoy all the gospel music performed on the stage from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

For more information, you may contact Dell Davis with the Claremore Chamber of Commerce at (918) 341-2818, Cindy Bissett with Claremore Main Street at (918) 341-5881, or Tanya Andrews with the Claremore Convention & Visitors Bureau at (918) 341-8688. Additional details regarding the event will be posted on these websites: www.downtownclaremore.orgwww.claremore.org and  www.visitclaremore.org

For more information, contact

Lilac Festival

(918) 341-2818 or
(918) 341-5881or
(918) 341-8688


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