Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Daffodils of Arkansas

By Ian Kleine

Never had I heard of a festival for one specific flower. Flowers, yes, but for daffodils?

Arkansas hosts this rare daffodil blooming festival at Wye mountain, at the time when the blossoms bloom. There isn't really set date for the season when the flowers bloom so when they do bloom, the festival date is then announced. As the locals say, 'when the daffodils want the festival to be now, it better be now.'

The festival is but a quaint one. There are no shows, no music, no flashy displays or whatsoever. It's just a community activity of having everyone go around the daffodil-dotted field and enjoy the day. There are no mentions of publicity much, but the festival is slowly starting to gain popularity because of its...quietness.

There are cute little shops around, selling some of the flowers and daffodil bulbs. The fields are well tended, as they should be, since they are the pride of the Wye-ans. The field is owned by the local church, and sales would go to pay for the church's needs. It's a nice money-generator for the town and for the church.

The festival reminds me of the cherry-blossom viewing festival of Japan, where peope just take the time to idle their worries away and enjoy the falling cherry petals in the mid-afternoon. Everyone would share a little bit of something with their neighbors, perhaps a bit of sake', or maybe some tea and some sweets. It's a festival of community spirit and brings everyone concerned closer.

Perhaps if the people had time to maybe bother with a little bit of entertainment while out in the fields, the festival might feel a whole lot better. But that's just me. Who knows, probably by next year, they'd have more in store for the tourists who might be interested to visit the area for the dainty daffodils. - 16651

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