Apparently Portuguese Water Dogs like tomatoes. Who knew? - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Apparently Portuguese Water Dogs like tomatoes. Who knew?

By Layron Livingston - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

JACKSONVILLE, TX (KLTV) - The White House will soon be seeing red over a silver anniversary. The City of Jacksonville is gearing up for it's 25th Annual Tomato Fest, and they're encouraging the Obama family - even their new four-legged family member will join in the celebration.

Once hailed as the "tomato capital of the world", in Jacksonville, tomatoes are a big deal, and so is Tomato Fest. David Claiborne said he's been growing tomatoes all his life.

"The hunger that East Texans have for Jacksonville tomatoes will culminate to a great event," said Claiborne

Not just in East Texas, but also the nation's capital.

"We found out that Bo Obama enjoyed tomatoes," said Claiborne.

So why not let the Obama's new Portuguese Water Dog sample some of East Texas' own red fruit fare. This year's tomato Fest chairman Robin Butt said everyone is excited.

"[It is] something we felt would be great for our community," said Robin.

Local growers are providing the tomatoes.

"We're happy to be a part of it," said Claiborne.

Top Tomato contest winners also get a chance to send well wishes to the first family.

"It's pretty cool," said 9-year-old Clint Hawkins.

"I think that they're going to really appreciate it," said Robin.

He said they can't actually send produce to the White House, but they've found a way around that.

"What we're doing is we're sending them some of our Jacksonville tomato seeds and hopefully they'll plant little Bo Obama his own little garden," explained Robin.

They're getting a bushel together for Senator Ted Kennedy and his Porties too.

"I think it's something that's going to be a little different for them," said Robin.

Who knew dogs liked tomatoes?

"I have a couple of St. Bernards and I don't think I've ever seen them eat tomatoes," said Robin.

"Do you have a dog," I asked Hawkins.

"Yeah," the 9-year-old replied.

"Does your dog eat tomatoes," I asked.

"No," he answered. 

"My dogs like cheetos, actually," said Claiborne.

Maybe it's just a Portuguese Water Dog thing. Jacksonville's okay with that.

About 10,000 spectators are expected for this year's Tomato Fest which kicks off on June 13th.

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