Bertram is perhaps best known for its Oatmeal Festival held each year on the Friday and Saturday before Labor Day (September 2 & 3, 2011). Begun in 1977 as a good-natured attempt to put neighboring Oatmeal back on the map after state map-makers ignored the tiny neighboring community, the festival has evolved into one of the wackiest, most imaginative small-town festivals anywhere. In 2011, Bertram celebrates 34 years of craziness and fun, and as always, it will actually "rain" oatmeal during the parade! (Watch out for Commander Caraway and the Oatmeal Air Force). Each year visitors come from far and wide, appreciating Bertram's sense of humor and their small town pride and friendliness.
Because the festival is sponsored by Three Minutes Brand Oats, every event starts at 3 or 33 minutes past the hour. The festival begins on Friday night with a BBQ dinner and the Miss Oatmeal Pageant in Oatmeal. A trail-ride moves the festivities to Bertram on Saturday, which includes a fun-run, parade, cook-off, zany games, food, and arts and crafts, Mutton Bustin' and more. Please visit www.oatmealfestival.com for more information and entry forms!
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At 8:03 a.m. the Trail Ride leaves Oatmeal and officially moves the Oatmeal Festival to Bertram on Saturday morning. Bring your own mount and/or mules and wagons. You'll end up in the Grand Parade through downtown Bertram. Awards will be given for the oldest, youngest, and best-dressed riders.
The Oatmeal Festival Fun Run, the annual 3.3 mile "Oat-a-thon" begins under the water tower on Vaughan Street at 8:03 a.m. September 3.
During the parade be on the look-out for the Grits Guzzler. Masked and dressed in a black cape, this dastardly fellow will walk in the parade and try to tempt our youth with grits, which are outlawed during the Oatmeal Fest. Pictured is the Grits Guzzler unmasked being "tarred and feathered" with molasses and oatmeal.
Following the parade, BBQ plates along with other foods will be sold at the Pavilion and Festival Grounds on FM 243, east of Hwy 29. Food booths, Arts & Craft booths, music and games will all be at the Festival Grounds through 5:03 p.m. There will be activities for everyone in the family. At 2:33 p.m. the Bertram School Homecoming is held at the Bertram Elementary Cafetorium. Lots of visiting is required and refreshments will be served.
The Oatmeal Festival Games for adults and children begin at 1:03 and continue throughout the afternoon. The festival is known far and wide for its unique, fun and wacky games, which include Oatmeal Box Stacking, the Cow Chip Kick-off, Goat Pill Popping, the popular Egg Toss and other silly games. There is also a Washer Pitching Tournament on the Festival Grounds adjacent to the Games.
T-Shirts for the 34rd Annual Oatmeal Festival will be on sale at local businesses.
Bring Your Sugar to the Oatmeal Festival!