One of the best parts of the National Blueberry Festival is its dependence on community. It takes strong teams of people to pull off South Haven’s biggest event every August. One such team is the Miss South Haven Court, and the Miss South Haven Scholarship Committee.
For the week of the festival the Miss South Haven Court takes on the title of the National Blueberry Festival Court and together with their fearless leaders help us run the show! No literally! They are everywhere! Here is a glimpse of their schedule during the festival:
Thursday: Run the Little Miss Blueberry Pageant & Community Opportunity
Friday: Wrangle kids at Meijer Kids Day, Special Appearances/Meet and Greet
Saturday: Pass out water at 5K Run/Walk, lead the DeGrandchamp Farms Parade, run the Kids and Adult Pie Eating Contest
Sunday: Pancake Breakfast Meet and Greet, Sand Castle Judging,Final Farewell & Photos
YIKS!!! And all while looking fabulous to represent our community with poise and dignity.
The partnership that has developed here is a very special one. As a festival, we are able to offer the court members an incredible experience being behind something so big. When the city is humming with crowds, the music is flowing, and the energy is pumping - the students are able to say - “we helped make this happen!” Likewise, the court offers us the honor of having these specially chosen youth showcasing our festival. They are not just a dependable group of students saying yes to parades and handing out water. They heartily agree to helping us out by sweating in the sun, cleaning up blueberry pie, and helping toddlers with chalk art.
Last year we started a new tradition, that we plan on carrying on! In June, we host a dinner called Celebrating Blue as a chance for the court members and the festival to get to know each other. We talk through the culture and values of the festival, trouble-shoot dramatic ‘What If’ scenarios, and have hilarious challenges that relate to the event world. It’s also our chance, as the National Blueberry Festival, to say thank you to this amazing group of young people.
We want to officially say thank you to the new 2019 Miss South Haven and Mr South Haven and their court members! Even though we don’t know you all, we are very proud of each of you, and all that you have accomplished to earn these important titles. We are so looking forward to working with you this year!
And to all the adults, parents and committee members that serve the Court behind the scenes - THANK YOU, for being amazing supporters, ambassadors and good sports with this wild and wonderful thing called the National Blueberry Festival!
Last festival’s Friday Night Entertainment was a roaring success! Jedi Mind Trip rocked out after Funkle Jesse warmed up the crowd for dancing! Favorites were played by excellent musicians and the Riverfront Park was packed. Midway through the concert, Entergy branded multi colored glow sticks started getting passed through the crowd and complemented the boat lights glowing along the river. People are still talking of how great this night was.
After 55 years of National Blueberry Festival, scenes like this could become common place to those living in South Haven, but they are anything but. We dance, sing, eat and relax together as a community. Nostalgic Friday night concerts make lasting memories for everyone there. If you think back, I am sure you can place yourself as a teen with your friends. These memories are a gift from Entergy - Palisades Power Plant.
With maintenance outages, and running a Nation’s top rated Nuclear Plant, you may be surprised to know all that Entergy-Palisades gets up to around South Haven area. Tours, blood drives, Adopt a Highway, South Haven Robotics Team, 5K fundraisers in Benton Harbor, backpack drives in Covert, Dragon Boat Races, Lake Michigan College, Habitat for Humanity, Mentoring programs, Pilgrim Haven’s public access, and our two personal favorites, the Bobby Walker Basketball Tournament and National Blueberry Festival’s Friday Night Entertainment on the Mainstage!
Entergy - Palisades’ involvement in community causes and recreation, truly reflects their passion to make our area thrive. No matter what the future holds, Entergy-Palisades has built an awesome legacy, that has and will continue to yield fruit for years to come. We as a festival are so grateful for what they do and the mark it makes on our youth, elderly, and all those in between.
So when you hear the music in Riverfront Park and think “Wow! What a great band!” take a moment to tip your (hard) hat to Entergy-Palisades Power Plant, and thank them for making our community proud.
National Blueberry Festival Resources!