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Friday, September 26, 2008

It's a Southern Thang

Pictures from a sweet little day trip to West Liberty, KY today. Since my mom (and dad, sister, and brother-in-law) will be on a two week trip out west, (specifically to the Grand Canyon), during the Apple Day festival and Jenny Wiley Days, (our fave fall happenings in our area), mi madre found this little jewel of a craft fair to help sustain her country bumpkin festival withdrawal. (That was a lot of parenthesis...)

In case you didn't know: Sorghum Cane - it looks much like corn without the ears. Instead of tassels on top like corn, it has clusters of many seeds. The seeds are small and round about 1/16" in diameter. It grows 6 to 12 feet tall and 1 to 2 inches in diameter at the base of the stalk.

The loveliest and most comfortable day of fall thus far. Lucky us!
This oldster was so proud of his little dog, fully clad in pink, complete with doggy sunglasses. He explained to us, somewhat like he was justifying this spectacle, that his little princess wears sunglasses for the same reason we do, practical shielding from the sun... yeah right. The blanket is covering up her dazzling pink regalia, but believe me, it was there.

Loved these birdhouses. Unfortunately, they weren't for sale, only adding to the cute factor of this town's adorable little park/pond/amphitheater area.

So colorful. If I had a yard, I'd fill it with these and have my little old lady looking yard very early in life. Maybe next year.The genesis of the sorghum process: a mule laboring to move the rollers in the contraption in the middle to crush the stalks which squeezes the juice out of the cane. Of course, this is done in a mill now, this is just a cute little representation of the "old times".
"Sweet sorghum is any of the many varieties of sorghum which have a high sugar content. Sweet sorghum will thrive under drier and warmer conditions than many other crops and is grown primarily for forage, silage, and sugar production." -Wikipedia
After enough juice is collected to fill the first section of the evaporator pan it is strained to remove pieces of stalk that might have been left in the juice. It is poured into the first compartment of the evaporating pan. A fire is built under the pan using wood or sometimes more modernly gas. The pan is divided into compartments so that several "batches" can be cooked at one time facilitating a continuous cooking process. The juice must boil.
The boiled juice is let out through the spout into the little jug which is in a bucket of water to help it cool. You may now eat and enjoy!
The many products of sorghum: molasses, apple butter, cookies, ginger bread, and others. Southern Appalachia is know for pouring it over their biscuits. I've never tried it but served it to those who special requested it when I worked at Cracker Barrel. Bug your waiter/waitress for it the next time you're there =)

The street we walked from the car to the craft tents. I wasn't taking pics of just every little sign, for your information, Prestonsburg is my hometown. One special street here.
I. loved. this. pottery.
A little script from "Grandpa's Pottery" business fliers: "Grandpa's Pottery is a family collaboration of talents. Ray and Betty Storer have been in the pottery industry for many years. Their son Brooke, is a great potter in his own right, and daughter-in-law Amy, who is from Thailand, gives an Asian flair to her pottery. Brooke and Amy have joined Ray throwing at the wheel and Betty adds her special glazing techniques for the finishing touch..."
I loved the splash of color and color combinations they used. I don't believe any of the pottery was a solid color. Which would fit-in perfectly with my smorgasbord of color decor.
My mom on the right, our friend, Jackie, on the left.
The two bowls on their side with the metal piece in the middle - beautiful sinks! I'm keeping the business card till we're ready for our unique sink.

First time to West Liberty and first time to the Sorghum Festival. Good call, Mom!


  1. Yeah for the Sorghum Festival! I have family in West Liberty--it's actually fairly close to where I grew up. So I've chewed on more than one cut of cane dipped in sorghum juice...and have been to a few Sorghum Fest's in my day. It is a fun little festival. I hope you got to hear a good bluegrass band while you were DO remember who the Father of Bluegrass Music is, don't you???

  2. Bill Monroe!

    I so talked about you today and how you made me learn that...

    haha. can't wait to get back to PMC and catch up =)


I just shared my thoughts, I'd love to hear you share yours! {Besides, I'm tired of listening to the voices in my head.} I kid, I kid... ;)