Here’s your guide to the 84th East Texas Yamboree

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GILMER, Texas (KETK)- It’s almost time for the 84th East Texas Yamboree.

The event is a celebration of the sweet potato or yam. This has been an East Texas tradition in Gilmer since 1935. It is held at the Yamboree Park.

The event will take place from Oct. 20-23 and includes a barn dance, concerts, livestock and ag mechanics show, a carnival, the queen’s race and the queen’s coronation.

See the full schedule of events below:

The coronation dates will be Oct. 20 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 21 at 7:30 p.m.

The 2021 Queen-Elect is Hannah Jean Henson.

Yamboree School Parade

The parade includes floats, marching bands, and walking groups.

Marching bands will join the event at the corner of Madison St. and Titus St. on the empty grass lot.

The parade begins on Titus St., then it goes left on Jefferson, right on Simpson, right on Hwy 154 and right on Trinity.

Floats will turn left on Buffalo and riders may come down from the floats at the Methodist Church.

Bands must stay together until the Cass St. Autos exit.

All floats should be on Madison St., between Titus and Trinity at 9 a.m., on Oct. 23. All other entries should be ready by 10:00 a.m. The parade will start at 11 a.m.

Yamboree Saturday Night Barn Dance

This will be located at the Yamboree event center, which is behind the Gilmer Civic Center (181 Bob Glaze Drive).

When: Oct. 23 at 8:00 p.m.

Ticket prices: Advance Tickets: $25.00  Purchased at Door: $30.00

Mike Ryan will be the main attraction. He is a country singer/ songwriter from San Antonio. His has 105 million streams so far.

Decorated Yam Contest

Entries must be created with real yams; however, they may not be decorated with foodstuffs (candies, icing, toothpaste, etc). Entries will be judged on originality, use of the potatoes’ unique shape, time and effort, appropriate artwork ability for the specific age group entered, according to the Yamboree website. During the contest, participants can decorate yams so they resemble people, animals or objects.

When: Oct. 20-23

Where: Yamboree Exhibit Building

Contestants should submit their entries by Wed., Oct. 20 from 1-4:00 p.m.

The costs to enter the competition can be found below:
Single Entries – $2 each
School Classroom Entries (Upshur County Schools) – $1.00 each potato
Groups – $5.00 (not to exceed 11×14 for one unit)

There are different divisions for the event, and they are listed below.

  1. Under 4yrs.
  2. 4-6 yrs.
  3. 7-9 yrs.
  4. 10-12 yrs.

Every participant will also get a ribbon.

Yam Pie Contest

This delicious competition is happening on Oct. 22 from 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

The contest has two divisions, and they can be found below.

Youth………. 9-18 years of age
Adult….…… 19 years and older

The focus of the contest will be on plain yam pies. There should be little to no spice and no other ingredients should be added. The pie crust also must be homemade.

Only one pie will be accepted per person.

Pies should be brought to the Yamboree Exhibit Building between 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. on Oct. 22.

There is no fee to enter the contest.

The winner of each division will be named the Grand Champion and get a plaque and $100.

Second place will receive a blue ribbon and $50. Those who get third place will get a ribbon and $25, but all 10 finalists in each division will receive a gift pack.

For more information about the Yamboree, click here.

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