Antique Days festival returns Saturday

By JAMIE PATTERSON,
Delicious kibbie, sweet syrup and biscuits, antique tractors and famous entertainment will arrive in Yazoo City this weekend with the return of the annual Antique Days Festival. 
The popular festival will be held Saturday at the Triangle Cultural Center with free admission. 
Entertainment this year will be provided by Carl Acuff Jr., the grandson of  Roy Acuff of Grand Old Opry fame, and his showband. 
After speaking with Phyllis Haynes, festival organizer, Acuff said Antique Days sounded like the perfect venue for him and his group. 
“We have worked many festivals over the last 25 years and after talking to Ms. Phyllis it sounded like a fun family friendly festival with lots of interesting vendors and craftsmen,” Acuff said. 
Acuff and his band will perform from 2-4 p.m.
The Carl Acuff Jr. Variety Showband has become an American institution since 1992.  The tour that will hit Yazoo City this weekend will continue along those lines of tradition with a dynamite show, great costuming, music and comedy.  
“As always, we hope that we can bring a smile to our crowds faces and that they can forget about their everyday cares for a little while and have fun with us,” Acuff said. “We always want to bring joy and happiness to our audiences especially with the way this election cycle has been going, I know everyone needs a break.”
Music is in Acuff’s blood, and it’s his family history that brings out his passion for music and performing. 
“I guess I was born with music in my blood,” Acuff said. “My dad had a band when I was a kid and at the age of three, I started playing drums and from there began to learn songs.  The first song I ever learned was Kansas City and from there it just blossomed and grew.”
But it’s the audience that makes every performance worthwhile for Acuff. 
“It’s the smiles and feedback we get from the audience,” he said. “Over the years I’ve had folks come up and thank me for how much fun they've had at one of our performances.”
The group is also proud of their salute to veterans during their performance. That same salute will be featured in Yazoo City this weekend. 
“The most gratifying reward is when I have a veteran or current military person come up and thank me for our salute to our veterans,” Acuff said. “Especially our Vietnam vets as they received a raw deal when they got back, and they deserve a long coming thank you for their service.”
Aside from world-class entertainment, Antique Days will feature a variety of activities and craftsmanship. 
Leo  Beatty and  his sugar cane mill will be making, beginning at 7 a.m. It will take all day to cook the syrup, and purchases can be made at the end of the day in pints and quarts.
A silent auctions will be held in the Triangle Cultural Center to benefit the Triangle  Cultural Center for much needed repairs to the local historic landmark.  
Local blues legend Arion Baby Bell will be playing from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. on the steps in front of the Triangle. 
 Lyle Wynn, a professional blacksmith with the Ms. Craftsman Guild, will be giving demonstrations and selling his handmade items straight from his forge.
Ted Mangum’s largest motorized Radio Flyer in the world will also be in town. Mangum’s hand-built version of the iconic child’s wagon measures some 18 feet long and is powered by a 460 engine.  Tickets will be $2 for a ride down Main Street.
Free buttermilk biscuits with butter and fresh made cane syrup or Yazoo honey will also be making their rounds throughout the festival.  
The third annual kibbie cookoff begins at 10 a.m. with judging an hour later. The winner will receive a Rico knife.
Local Greg Harkins, famous chairmaker to the presidents, will be at the festival showing his handmade furniture.  
 Face painting, beanbag throws, pumpkin painting, and hula hoop contests are all part of the fun kids zone. 
Restored antique tractors will parade through town at 11 a.m.
 Jimmy Isonhood will have his local Yazoo honey, and Hit and Miss Engines will  be huffing and puffing away.
“I’d just like to invite everyone out to the Antique Days Festival to enjoy all the festivities and our show,” Acuff added.