Picture Credit: Arkansas Cornbread Festival
Connecting over cornbread is a southern tradition and the Arkansas Cornbread Festival has been a staple in our beloved SoMa neighborhood since 2011. This festival brings the neighborhood and people around Little Rock together for good conversation while serving up music, food, art, vendors, food trucks, beer, a kids corner and more!
It is free to attend the festival, but if you really want to savor this event, you can purchase a tasting ticket for $8 in advance or $10 at the festival. With a ticket, you can sample the cornbread recipe and side dishes of each competitor then vote on your favorite. If you want VIP status, you can purchase the cornbread connoisseur package which adds a cornbread tin, a Cosmo Cornbread koozie and a bottle opener to your tasting ticket.
This competition is putting local professional chefs and home cooks cooking skills to the test, serving up their best cornbread recipes and sides. Some of our neighborhood favorites will be competing like The Root & Community Bakery as well as other fan favorites — Mockingbird Bar & Tacos, Boulevard Bread Company, Allsopp and Chapple, 8311 Catering, The DoubleTree & The Marriott. And don’t miss the amateur teams which include Junior League of Little Rock, KUAR/KLRE and more.
“Cornbread is an integral part of our southern heritage, and we live in a community steeped in history and tradition. It just seems to be a good fit for a festival in Little Rock.” Anita Davis - Arkansas Cornbread Festival Creator
If you’re not a fan of cornbread, or need a little something extra, the festival will also be serving up some of the best food trucks in town and brews from local breweries. Get some grub from Juicy J Fish and Chicken, Count Porkula, The Big Squeeze or Lee’s Concession and pair it with a brew from Diamond Beer Brewing, Flyway Brewing Company, Stone’s Throw Brewing, or Buffalo Brewing Company.
After lunch, stick around for an array of local vendors to get some christmas shopping done and don’t forget to stop by local businesses who are having specials for festival attendees. After you shop till you drop, head over to the main stage at The Bernice Garden to chill out and listen to tunes from incredibly talented local acts.
11 am: Marquis Hunt with percussionist Stephin Booth
12 pm: Joynet Radio presents: Torrey Dulaney, Grace Justified and Amanda Armstrong
1 pm: A Rowdy Faith
2 pm: Dazz & Brie
Take a picture or get a high five from Cosmo, the neighborhood’s lovable cornbread skillet and keep the kids entertained at Cosmo’s Kid Corner. Cosmo will have interactive fun and games too!
The Arkansas Cornbread Festival is truly an experience you don’t want to miss. And this year the festival is greener than ever before. Vendors will have paper bags and cups instead of plastic, and you may notice refillable water bottle stations. The festival hopes to become the standard for a plastic free low waste event and encourages you to bring a water bottle from home.
The best part is that the event is walkable from most of our apartments, so this is a great chance to walk down and get to know your neighborhood. Join us this Saturday! The festival runs down-the-middle of South Main Street from 13th to 17th Street.