The tomatoes are starting to grow

This is the time of year that minds turn to tomatoes, especially here in Dorchester County.

This is the time of year that minds turn to tomatoes, especially here in Dorchester County.

Save the date for the Great Eastern Shore Tomato Festival on Aug. 20

VIENNA — This is the time of year that minds turn to tomatoes, especially here in Dorchester County. Given the County’s heritage of canning houses and the legacy of warehouses abandoned, the Great Eastern Shore Tomato Festival seeks to bring that back to life, even if only for one day each year.
In preparation for this 5th Annual event, the sponsoring organization, the Dorchester County Historical Society is looking for lots of help. From being a volunteer on festival day to gaining more vendors, demonstrators and entertainment, much work is still to be done. The festival, which will be held on Aug. 20 on the Nanticoke River in Vienna, is gearing up!

Vendor spaces are still available with nonprofits and heritage demonstrators participating for free. People are being sought to display their canning memorabilia as art in the Heirloom Zone, which is a climate-controlled space, protected from the elements. These items may or may not be for sale, depending on the owner’s wishes.

Vintage and antique tractors, cars, trucks and farm wagons are needed to be part of a midday parade, as well as transportation for the Tomato Queen or King. Local entertainment, including dance groups, church groups, etc. can find an outlet and an audience at this family friendly event.

Of course Melon Mayhem, Punkin’ Chunkin’ style, will be back this year … bigger than ever! While the Tomato Wars will be scaled back to one epic, TOMATO WAR, that’s not to say that tomato fun is missing. Incredible new kids’ crafts, family games and more will entertain down on the waterfront.
Up on Race Street in the Heirloom Zone, Tomato Flights are offered for the first time this year. For a $5 Boarding Pass, you will be entitled to sample 5 delectable tomato dishes … tomato fresca, tomato jam, tomato pie, chocolate tomato cake and a Virtuous Mary … while you peruse the silent auction art submissions.

Meet the real live Tommy Tomato, who will be on hand from 11 am – 2 pm, teaching everyone to fry green tomatoes the Tommy way!! Watch out or he’ll enlist your help. Green tomato kits will be available to purchase that day, as will the popular Fifty Shades of Red cookbook.

Embellish or print your own 2016 Tomato Festival t-shirt-starting a tradition that can carry on for years. Bring a t-shirt and stamp it with one of several images, new this year for only $5/printing. Of course you can purchase a new stamped tshirt as well.

If you would like to be involved in this great event, please contact Ann or Mitch at 410-228-7953 or e-mail

Information about past festivals and forms can be found at

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