Noonday Onion Festival On Hold For This Season - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/30/02 - Noonday

Noonday Onion Festival On Hold For This Season

  The Noonday Onion Festival has been an East Texas tradition for seventeen years, drawing thousands to the small community. However, this year there won't be a festival. Unlike their onions, the Noonday Onion Festival has grown too large. Concerns over preparing for the festival crowds has led the city of Noonday to cancel their festival this year.

  Noonday Mayor Bennie Smith says, "The main problem is to have adequate parking. We have a space for the festival, but we do not have adequate parking for the number of people to come to the festival, and of course we don't want people to come from all over the county to the festival and not have a space to park."

  Businesses have moved into the area where the festival has been held, cutting down on the space available for parking for the thousands of people who attend the festival every year.

  Over the past seventeen years, the event has grown to the point where the festival had overpowered the famous mild onions. Local onion growers say their primary business has little to do with the festival. "we don't depend on the onion festival," said Raymond Oldham, President of the Noonday Sweet Onion Growers Association.

  There's no need for tears here, however, because noonday sees a return crop for the festival for next year. The city has already received several offers for new locations for next year's festival.

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