Adel Sweet Corn Festival

The Adel Sweet Corn Festival is pure joy.

The whole town gathers to celebrate, with corn shucking on Friday, a parade on Saturday, free sweet corn, vendors around the town square, and stage entertainment Saturday afternoon and evening.

I love this festival because it’s so home-grown, no pun intended. The parade features little kids, high schoolers, scouts, high school reunion oldsters, farmers, churches, and only a few politicians.

Even better than the parade is the huge sweet corn feed. The line seems huge when you get in it, but it just flies by. These people really know how to cook and serve corn on the cob. Dozens of ears are cooked all at once in milk crates submerged in boiling water. The crates are then dumped out on a stainless-steel serving tray and served by an army of volunteers armed with with tongs.

How many free ears of corn can one person take? As many as you can fit on a paper plate. I saw people with six ears. I ate two ears, and they were fantastic. Afterwards, my face was coated with butter, salt, and pepper. In fact, the whole town probably had to be power-washed after the festival ended, what with all that butter.

Who can resist a little kid eating corn on the cob? I loved taking their pictures. Everyone was happy.

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