The Fallon Festival Association is excited to announce the merging of the Fallon Cantaloupe Festival and the Churchill County Country Fair into one great event coming this Labor Day, September 4-7, 2015!
“A premier event for the entire family promoting the Fallon area, celebrating our agricultural past and present, showcasing local talent, and supporting Nevada business,” the Fallon Cantaloupe Festival & Country Fair promises to be a weekend you won’t want to miss.
Activities include live entertainment throughout the weekend, fair exhibits, children’s activities, a variety of shopping vendors, 4-H club demonstrations and displays, Lion’s Club Labor Day Parade and Jr. Rodeo, and don’t forget about the farmer’s market, featuring the tasty Hearts of Gold cantaloupe!
Be sure to mark your calendars for a weekend in Fallon this coming Labor Day!
Some Hearts of Gold Cantaloupe History
O.J. Vannoy was the first to grow Hearts of Gold cantaloupe in the Fallon area, in 1911, and they were grown here in abundance in the 1920’s and 1930’s.
The origin of The Hearts Of Gold variety is Benton Harbor, Mich., said Aaron Whaley, associate director of Seed Savers Exchange. The Decorah, Iowa-based exchange is a nonprofit group that saves and shares heirloom seeds. According to the 1937 publication “Vegetables of New York,” Roland Morrill crossed the Osage melon with the Netted Gem melon in 1890, Whaley said. It took Morrill a while to stabilize the new variety, Hearts of Gold, however he was granted a trademark for the variety on Dec. 15, 1914 (cite: www.seedsavers.org).
Rick Lattin, with Lattin Farms in Fallon, said his family has been growing Hearts of Gold since the 1950’s. According to Lattin, Nevada’s Hearts of Gold market crashed early in the century when California farmers grew hybrid varieties that stood up better to shipping. A few families kept the variety alive in northern Nevada though, including the Lattins.