Texas has a huge state fair. People come to Dallas from hundreds of miles away to attend it every fall. It’s so prominent, in fact, that it can overshadow individual town and city celebrations.
The lack of comparative prominence doesn’t usually stop those events from happening. If anything, it encourages many towns to work to stand out, seeking something that makes their particular city celebration distinctive.
Clute, Texas has that concept covered. Located just under an hour south of Houston, it’s got all of Houston’s humidity and heat, but with even more waterways. This was probably the inspiration for the event which has been held annually since 1981: the Mosquito Festival.
It’s got a mascot – Willie Man-Chew.. and a giant inflatable version of him. It’s got events that play out across a weekend in late July. It’s got a charity run. It’s got a children’s travelling carnival. It’s even got a mosquito calling challenge.
In case you think that Texans are the only people crazy enough to have a mosquito festival, though… there’s also Russia. Theirs only dates back less than a decade, though, and features things like a competition to see who’s been bitten by more insects.
Between the pair of them, I think Texas wins. In the broader picture, as both areas have so many of the biting insects that they’re locally known for their mosquitoes, I think both have to be said to lose.
Question of the night: What’s a place you’ve been that you’d encourage people to visit?