Blanco County News
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Lavender Takes Over Blanco for 8th Year
Wednesday, June 6, 2012 • Posted June 7, 2012

Blanco hosts the eighth annual Blanco Lavender Festival this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, attracting visitors from all over the country. A Lavender Market will spring up on the grounds of the Old Blanco County Courthouse, featuring arts and crafts and local lavender products. Tour local lavender farms where you can experience the beauty of lavender in the fields and the unique vision of each farmer. Enjoy good food and listen to some great music.

The dry weather and alkaline limestone soils around Blanco make the area particularly suitable for growing lavender. The first commercial lavender farm in the state, Hill Country Lavender, was started near Blanco in 1999. The climate and terrain reminded farm owners Jeannie Ralston and Rob Kendrick of Provence, France, where they had recently visited. After planting their lavender, they gave seminars to others who wanted to grow the beautiful flowers. From them, the lavender industry in the Hill Country grew.

The lavender blooming season generally runs May through July, with the June festival right in the middle. The farms participating in 2012 Farm Tours are Wimberley Lavender Farm, Hill Country Lavender, and Miller Creek Lavender. Visitors to the farms will be able to see the lavender farming industry in different stages of development. Since all farms are within 20 minutes’ driving distance, visitors can stop at several in one day. Each farm will offer activities and events related to lavender, such as classes in aromatherapy and demonstrations of lavender oil distillation. The farms will be open to the public for tours, special activities, and cutting lavender blooms during the festival. Admission to the farms is free.

An assortment of vendors and artists will gather on the historic grounds of the Old Blanco County Courthouse in the center of Blanco. The participating lavender farms will have booths at the Lavender Market, each featuring their lavender and lavender-related goods. Here are just a hint of the vendors you will find at the Blanco Lavender Festival:

Soapmarked — Handmade bath and body products, hand-knitted and -crocheted items, hand-dyed and hand-spun yarn. Frosting and

Sprinkles — Handcrafted, one-of-a-kind fine silver and dichroic glass jewelry incorporating real leaves, fossils, and seashells.

Hill Country Alliance — A passionate community organization caring for the unique features, spring-fed streams, heritage ranch lands, spectacular beauty and culture of the Texas Hill Country for the benefit of future generations.

The market will be open noon to 6 pm on Friday, 9 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and 10 am to 4 pm on Sunday giving visitors plenty of time to browse through all the booths.

Upstairs in the courthouse on Saturday and Sunday, educational programs about lavender will be presented during the Speakers’ Pavilion. Seating is limited to first come, first served.

On Saturday, Jeanne Ralston, who started the first commercial lavender farm in Blanco, will be speaking at 3:30 and will share her experiences and her book “The Unlikely Lavender Queen”.

The last speaker on Sunday at 3:00pm will be Ernest Miller who is a local farmer and has insights to local farming methods.

Blanco Lavender Festival is proud to present the following musicians who will be performing in the amphitheater in beautiful Bindseil City Park on the Square, across the street from the Lavender Festival Market.

Music Schedule

Friday, June 8th

3pm to 5pm - Zydeco Blanco

Saturday, June 9th

10am to 11:30am — 3 Hands High

12pm to 1:30pm — Rachel Laven

2pm to 3:30pm — Jeffrey Charles

4pm to 5:30pm — Flying A’s

Sunday, June 10th

10am to 11:30am — Blanco Canyon Gospel Group

12pm to 1:30pm — Bobby Mack

2pm to 4pm — Two Tons of Steel

For the health and safety of your pets, we ask that you do not being them to the Festival. Service animals are welcome; please leave all others in the comfort of home!

For more information about this lively and family-friendly festival, along with full schedules for speakers, musicians, and lavender farm activities, visit blancolavenderfestival.com. Contact the Blanco Chamber of Commerce at 830-833-5101 or info@blancochamber.com with your questions.

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