2023 Florida Strawberry Festival: “We Have a Winner!”

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By Michele Baker 

The time has come to start planning your yearly visit to the famous Florida Strawberry Festival in Plant City. The 88th annual festival is sure to be one of the greatest yet with a star-studded line of up live entertainment, food, activities and souvenirs. The theme for 2023 is “We Have a Winner!” so get ready for fun March 2-12! 

About the Strawberry Festival

The Florida Strawberry Festival is an 11-day community event celebrating the strawberry harvest of Eastern Hillsborough County. Each year, over 500,000 visitors enjoy the festival’s headline entertainment, youth livestock shows, exhibits of commerce and, of course, strawberry shortcake.   

See great headliners

The headliner lineup includes The Oak Ridge Boys Front Porch Singin’ Tour, Walker Hayes, Willie Nelson & Family, Halestorm, Sara Evans, Curtis “Ludacris” Bridges, The Gatlin Brothers, Chris Young, Neal McCoy, Josh Turner, Roots & Boots Aaron Tippin, Collin Raye and Sammy Kershaw, CeCe Winans, Tanya Tucker, The Jacksons, Tommy James & The Shondells, For King + Country, Wayne Newton, Train, Sawyer Brown, The Isley Brothers, The Leroy Van Dyke Country Gold Tour, featuring Leroy Van Dyke, T. G. Sheppard, Mandy Barnett and T. Graham Brown, and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Click here for the full schedule and ticket sales. 

Free entertainment

The 2023 festival’s free musical entertainment includes Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra, Bill Haley Jr. & The Comets, The Jersey Girls, Dennis Lee, Pastor “Pee Wee” Callins, Martin & Kelly, Electric Woodshed, Reach City Worship, Rockland Road, Kazual, and many more.

On the festival grounds, see Robinson’s Racing Pigs, Rock-It The Robot, Mr. & Miss Berry, and Runa Pacha “Indian World.” See the full schedule here.

Senior citizens get discounts

Each Senior Citizens Day (Thursday, March 2 and Thursday, March 9), seniors over age 60 can get $2 off the gate admission. Plus, a prize will be given away each Senior Citizens Day following the 10:30 a.m. show on the Wish Farms Soundstage to the lucky senior whose ticket is drawn. Tickets for the drawing will be available to seniors in the stadium. (You must be present at the Senior Citizens Program to win.) Start planning your visit.

…And so do kids!

Kids of all ages will enjoy the Midways, and on Saturday, March 4 and Tuesday, March 7, they get FREE admission! (More discounts and freebies.) In fact, in every nook and around every corner of the Festival, you’ll find fun for all ages! Here are other stops we’d recommend for children: Swindle Family and Astin Farms Livestock Pavilions, FSGA Booth & Ask A Farmer Exhibit, Shoebox Float Display, Stingray Entertainment Tent, East Historical Society Art Show, Pioneer Village and the Neighborhood Village.

Image from the event Facebook page

All Things Strawberry

For strawberry-flavored fun, the festival will serve nearly any strawberry treat you can think of. Shortcake, shakes, jam, sandwiches, cheesecake, pizza (think dessert pizza, with a graham cracker crust, cream cheese base and berry slices on top), cobbler, crepes, lemonade, fritters, fudge and fresh strawberries to take home. 

For lots more information, admission information, parking, and a complete schedule of events, visit www.flstrawberryfestival.com, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. To post or find content about the festival, search #berryfest23.

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