PLAINS, TX (KCBD) - Directing the Yoakum County Watermelon Round-Up is in Sharla Vantine's blood. This is her third year directing it, but she has been involved since it started 20 years ago.
Vantine said her grandmother served as the director for thirteen years and passed down the responsibility to Vantine, who looks forward to it every year.
"With the Watermelon Round-Up, we bring in about 8 to 10,000 people on the Saturday before Labor Day every year. For our little community of 1,400, that's a huge deal," Vantine said.
Vantine said they are keeping all of the favorites of this longtime tradition like the watermelon eating contest, seed spitting contest and car and bike show.
There will also be live music and the traditional 5K/10K run along with more than 100 vendors.
"It brings families together. It unites the community, not just Plains, but Denver City as well as the local areas of Bronco and Tokyo and everyone within the county. The roots are so deep here. We have people that travel back clear across the country." Vantine said.
Vantine said this year, they are adding a Watermelon Round-Up beauty pageant for children ages three to six-years-old.
"The Yoakum County Connection sponsors the Watermelon Round-Up, which in turn brings in a profit that we use to promote the arts," Vantine said.
She said some of the money raised is donated to the high school art and drama clubs as well as county art programs.
The event kicks off at 9 a.m. on Saturday, September 5.
To learn more about the Yoakum County Watermelon Round-Up, click here.