By: Duane Blankenship | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: October 2009
Hazel Ward, owner of The Nut House, and her daughter Leslie look forward to the Route 66 Pecan & Fun Fest, scheduled for October 24 at Pecan Hall in Claremore.
The Nut House first opened its doors 41 years ago and sold only native pecans. It has been in its current location on Highway 66, just four miles north of Catoosa, since 1979. Hazel Ward took ownership of The Nut House in 2006. Today, the business has grown into a full-time endeavor serving individuals and businesses with nuts, confectionery treats, and a huge variety of gifts. You’ll enjoy shopping for all kinds of nuts, saltwater taffy, apple butters, honey butters, and of course, The Nut House’s ever popular fudge varieties.
According to Hazel, “Part of our business still operates out of the original pecan log cabin that was constructed to house the pecan-cracking operation.” The log cabin was moved to the current business location in 1979.
The Nut House prides itself on the selection of items carried, the quality of their merchandise, and their excellent customer service. “We enjoy people and want their experience with us to be fun,” adds Hazel. You’ll enjoy slowly meandering through the aisles and viewing displays at The Nut House as you sample some of the foods prior to making your purchase decisions. The many flavorful products will surprise you.
Immediately south of The Nut House is Pecan Hall, a 2,400-square-foot event center that is available for parties, receptions, business meetings, family reunions and other gatherings. Pecan Hall will provide tables and chairs to seat up to 100 people and is capable of holding up to 200 guests. They will arrange for outside catering for your event if desired.
On October 24, 2009, Pecan Hall will be the site of the first-ever Route 66 Pecan & Fun Fest, an event designed for the entire family. The Pecan & Fun Fest will feature an outdoor car show, an indoor crafts fair featuring crafters from across the state, inflatables for the kids, and a pecan pie eating contest with three age divisions –7 to 10 years, 11 to 14 years, and 15 and up. Contestants are encouraged to pre-register for the pie eating contest because each age category will be limited to 10 entrants – first come, first served. Participants will be devouring delicious pecan pies. Prizes will be awarded in each age group. In the interest of entertainment, pies will be eaten without the aid of hands, and all crumbs must be licked clean from the plates. This event is guaranteed to appeal to the entire family.
If you’re interested in showing your pride and joy in the car show, the fee is $20 for early-bird entries and $25 for entries received after October 14. Each car show entrant will receive a commemorative event T-shirt.
The Route 66 Pecan & Fun Fest will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, October 24. Following the day’s activities, the Mid Life Crisis Band will be performing at the event center from 8 to 11 p.m. Admission to the concert will be $15, and you’re invited to come out for some toe-tapping, dancing, and good listening as Mid Life Crisis plays the music of Van Morrison, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, as well as a host of one-hit wonders from those fabulous days of rock-n-roll in the 60s and 70s. Barbecue, beer and soft drinks will be available at the concession area throughout the day.
Call (918) 266-1604 or email Leslie at eat0@eau0eav0eaw0 for entry forms or more information on the Route 66 Pecan & Fun Fest.
Blankenship graduated from the University of Oklahoma and has enjoyed a lifetime career in advertising. He started his own advertising business in 1993 and enjoys creating graphic art and writing. Hobbies include hunting, fishing and pencil drawings. Duane and his wife, Janice, have been married over 50 years and are active in their church and community. He has been a contributing writer for Value News/Values Magazine since 2005.