My daughter and I had a wonderful relaxing time this afternoon. We attended the 19th annual Jonquil Jubilee in Gibsland, Louisiana. The quaint downtown area was blocked off for vendors and the information tent. With a dollar, we entered the raffle for a chance to win “1000 Daffodils and Labor to Plant.” All proceeds go to further “promote Bienville Parish as Daffodil Capital of Louisiana,” cost of the bulbs, and labor planting them in public places and private property for a driving tour that is beautiful. The winner can have the bulbs planted at a place of their choice. For more information on what this festival is and what is about, please go to this link: www.jonquiljubilee.com
The Jonquil Jubilee began with a pancake breakfast at the Gibsland Lions Club followed by the 2nd annual 5K Run/Walk which began at Merritt Pavilion. Lunch was available at the Gibsland Grill owned by Charlie and Marsha Andrews. They have been established for ******years and cook some of the best down home cooking around, from pork chops to grilled burgers and all the fixings along with the best buttermilk pie, from what I hear. I plan to sample some of that soon, too. Downtown is home to the Bonnie and Clyde Ambush Museum L.L.C., the Barbara Van Cleave Joiner Memorial Garden, and the beautiful Burkhalter Gazebo.
Along with the outside vendors including Twin Oaks’ plant nursery lot, there were vendors inside the Gibsland Bank Annex building. There were old cut glassware, jewelry, quilts, ladies’ denim aprons, potted blooming jonquils, handmade soaps, homemade whoopee pies and tea cakes, and so much more. We missed the tea cakes, but had our first taste of whoopie pie, which was delicious. We made new friends as we visited from place to place, and saw old friends who we got to enjoy catching up with.
There were a few fields of flowers in town that were great for photo ops. We saw a couple of grandparents taking photos of their granddaughter as she posed in the daffodils. My daughter and I couldn’t resist and had some fun with this also.
At key points of the driving tour, there was a garden party, and opportunity to hear Master Gardener and area columnist, Maggie Martin, and more handmade quilts and crafts. One could also view the 2nd annual “Celebration of Daffodils” through beautiful tablescapes at the Gibsland United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. Visitors could tour the Mt. Lebanon Baptist Church Sanctuary, which is the oldest continuously operated Baptist Church in Louisiana. One shouldn’t forget the Mt. Lebanon Stagecoach Trail Museum or Russell and Sue Kettler’s Blacksmith Shop to watch demonstrations that take you back into history. We saw at least three large fields of the beautiful flowers inspiring the jubilee, and got several photos up close. The tour was filled with beauty and rich in local history. We missed out of some of these things, but plan to go earlier next year to enjoy much more of the jubilee.
After our driving tour, we stopped one street over from downtown Gibsland and bought BBQ chicken. I have to say that this treat is a tie with the best BBQ I have ever eaten period. Key Rail’s Barbeque is on Mt. Lebanon Street, and has been in business for 15 years. They are apparently well known for their great smoked BBQ judging by how early they sold out of brisket and some of the other popular meats. The meats can be ordered in sandwiches, plates with fixings, or most of them in large quantity for a family or group. If you go by there and eat, you won’t be sorry. I would venture to say you will probably be like me, a repeat customer.
I will definitely be at the Jonquil Jubilee in Gibsland next spring earlier and with money to spend, and some family and friends, too. I hope to see you there.
Have a blessed day, friends