skip navigation and jump to page content The Library of CongressThe American Folklife Center 
Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
Collage of Local Legacies
Kids play at the duck pond at St. John's Annual Picnic
Kids play at duck pond at St. Johns Annual Picnic. Photo courtesy Parish Community of St. John

St. John Annual Picnic

Extending as far back as at least 1925, the St. John Annual Picnic, along with other church socials, was begun as a project of the St. John Catholic Church to raise money to build a new church. Any profits were deposited in the bank in a St. John's Building Fund. The new church was completed in 1933. The church socials grew into the St. John Picnic and Barbecue. Discontinued during World War II, it was reinstated in 1975, and got bigger each year, so that it came to be called "The Biggest Little Picnic in Western Kentucky." It is now held the first Saturday after Labor Day, and the proceeds are totally dedicated to St. John and St. Mary parochial schools of the parish.

Barbecued ribs, chicken, pork and mutton are served, along with hot dogs, drinks and popcorn, funnel cakes, ice cream. Games include bingo, bottle toss, cake wheel, can throw, coin toss, free throw, and ping pong. Politicians are always on hand to give speeches, and have included Senator Wendell Ford, Rep. Carroll Hubbard, former Kentucky governor Julian Carroll, and Lt. Governor Steve Beshear. Also featured are a country store, live musical entertainment, pony rides and a "duck pond" for kids, and a new car raffle. In 1999, the picnic raised $105,043.60.

Originally submitted by: Ed Whitfield, Representative (1st District).

link to www.loc.govMore Local Legacies...

The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

disclaimer for external linksLearn More About It...
  The Library of Congress 
The American Folklife Center
Contact Us
AFC Icon