Stockton Asparagus Festival

Stockton Asparagus Festival

Last weekend in April
This two-day celebration takes place in Stockton, Calif., the heart of the region that claims to be the "Asparagus Capital of the Nation." In fact, California accounts for about 90 percent of the fresh-market asparagus production in the country, and most of that asparagus comes from Stockton's San Joaquin Delta region.
The festival began in 1986 to promote the asparagus and it now draws 80,000 spectators to the region's various events. These include about 50 food booths in Asparagus Alley, a wine-tasting booth, a fun run (some runners wear asparagus spears in their headbands), a car show of some 200 antique and classic cars, arts and crafts, live entertainment, and children's activities.
There's also a recipe contest; among the past winning entries are enchiladas and lasagna made, of course, with asparagus. Other popular asparagus dishes served include asparaberry shortcake (it is said the asparagus gives a nutmeg flavor to the strawberries), asparagus-and-beef sandwiches, and asparagus bisque.
The festival is also a time to promulgate information about the asparagus. Fair-goers learn that asparagus is a source of vitamins A and C; the first trainload of asparagus was sent east from California in 1900; the Greeks and Romans used asparagus as a medicine for bee stings, dropsy, and toothache, and also as an aphrodisiac.
CONTACTS:
Stockton Asparagus Festival
311 E. Main St., Ste. 204
Stockton, CA 95202
209-644-3740; fax: 209-644-3755
www.asparagusfest.com
References in periodicals archive ?
His first outdoor meet was the Stockton Asparagus Festival, a street meet, where he jumped 18-41/2 from a short approach, and he jumped 18-63/4, also from a short approach, in the Scottish Games in Livermore.
As Travale said in the introduction to the first Stockton Asparagus Festival cookbook, Asparagus Always, "After attending numerous community events throughout California, I am convinced that Stockton is a perfect location for our own major fund raising event.
At the Stockton Asparagus Festival, McKirdy, 24, hopes to eat five pounds of asparagus - or almost the weight of two 1,692-page Webster's New World Dictionaries.
You can join the first Stockton Asparagus Festival from 10 to 7 April 26 and 27 at Oak Grove Regional Park, just north of town.