Cooking contest at the Chokecherry Festival

Chokecherries are ripening around Central Montana, turning a deep, dark red that almost looks black. Don’t cook with unripened chokecherries  as the flavor is too tart.

Photos courtesy of Lewistown Art Center

Wild chokecherries are ripe for picking. It’s time to get them picked and processed. It’s also time to create a chokecherry dish for the contest held at the Lewistown Art Center on Festival day, Saturday, Sept. 9.

Entry forms are at the Lewistown Art Center. All entries must be submitted Saturday, starting at 8 a.m. Judging begins at 9 a.m. There are categories for everyone and every dish, including a youth division, age 12 and under. There is a category for commercial chokecherry products and even a non-edible chokecherry creation, for example, a picture or a quilt or something made from a chokecherry branch.

No time to pick those chokecherries? Not to worry: chokecherry juice, syrup and jelly are available at your local farmers’ market and at several businesses in town, including the Art Center.

Prizes are given to the blue ribbon winners in each category. Certificates are given for first, second and third in each category. There is a Best of Show and Best Presentation.

The public is welcome to view and sample the entries after the judging. Throughout the day chokecherry snacks will be provided at the Art Center.

The Art Center (corner of Fourth and Main) looks forward to seeing your chokecherry creation on festival day. For more information, contact the Lewistown Art Center at 535-8278.

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