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Bivens’ column: It’s Blueberry Festival time in Brewton

This coming weekend all roads lead to Jennings’ Park in downtown Brewton for the 35th annual Alabama Blueberry Festival.
We are inviting you to join us for this big festival Saturday, June 20, from 80 a.m. to 3 p.m.
It will be a day full of good wholesome food, fun, and entertainment for the entire family. 
If you’re not familiar with the location, a good landmark to look for is the Ritz Movie Theatre Marquee in downtown Brewton where Hwy 31 and 41 intersect.
It’s going to be so exciting to have live entertainment all day, arts and crafts, antique/classic car show, festival cookbooks, a food court, lots of blueberry ice cream, fresh blueberries, and blueberry bushes for sale!
There will also be a special children’s section including shuttle train, fun inflatables, water slide, obstacle course, petting zoo, and face painting. So, be sure to load up the family and head to Brewton for a day of great family fun!
For more information call the Greater Brewton Area Chamber of Commerce at (251) 867-3224 or email them at www.brewtonchamber.com/blueberry-festival.
If you’re wondering what to do with all those wonderful blueberries you find at the festival, the Escambia County Extension Office has a great free pamphlet called “Alabama Blueberries” available just for you.
It gives great information on different types, how to freeze, store, prepare blueberries and it has tasty recipes, too.
Call (251) 867-7760 or stop by our office in the USDA Center in Brewton on Hwy 31 South (behind Southern Pine Electric Cooperative) and pick up your copy today.
Recipes were developed by Alabama Cooperative Extension System.Blueberries can be classified as a convenience food because there is no pitting, peeling, or waste.
A pint serves four people generously, and a half-cup serving of blueberries contains only 44 calories. Fresh blueberries are known as “brain food”, high in antioxidants, a good source of vitamins A and C, soluble fiber, potassium, phytochemicals, and phosphorous.
Here are some delicious ways to enjoy blueberries:
• Make a quick parfait by layering yogurt, low-fat granola and blueberries in whatever proportions you’d like in a small container. Then repeat ingredients until you reach the desired quantity.
• Blend a couple of small pieces of frozen blueberries, 3/ 4 cup of juice and a half-cup of vanilla or other flavored yogurt for a quick smoothie.
Sprinkle fresh blueberries on cereal, ice cream, melons, or meringue shells.
• Use blueberry sauce on vanilla pudding or ice cream.
• Make blueberry crepes. Place sweetened blueberries sprinkled with lemon juice in the center on freshly cooked crepes and roll the crepes.
Top with whipped cream and more berries or a blueberry sauce.
• Stir blueberries into pancake, waffle or cake batter.
• Nestle a few blueberries inside biscuits along with a little butter and sugar, bake, and serve hot for a surprise opening.  
Here is a great recipe from the Alabama Blueberries pamphlet for you to enjoy!

Blueberry-Peach Yogurt Smoothie
½ cup orange juice
½ cup vanilla low-fat yogurt
½ cup blueberries
½ cup peeled and sliced peaches
1-2 teaspoons honey (to taste)
½ cup ice
Blend the ice, orange juice, honey, and yogurt. Add sliced peaches and blend well. Add the blueberries, and blend on low for 30 seconds.
Add leftover blueberries to the top and enjoy a great fruity smoothie.