Weird & Wonderful Texas: Did You Know Oatmeal, TX Has An Oat Meal Festival?
The fact that there is an Oatmeal, Texas, and that they have an Oatmeal Festival is giving me extreme cute aggression. If it was possible to aggressively hug an entire town, I'd try it.
I grew up in Lubbock which had a significantly more rural vibe in the '90s, but wasn't a bonafide small town. I got that experience from visiting my grandparents in rural Oklahoma. The town they lived in just had a graduating class of... five. My cousins and I bought candy at the feed store and visited the same horse year after year.
I have a deep affection for places a child can walk across in a day, and in which every single adult knows that child. It's lovely and nearly a bygone reality. Because as charming as that is, I still wouldn't want to live there and neither do most people. Interestingly, Oatmeal is only an hour from Austin so it's probably not that bad.
It might very well be worth a road trip to Oatmeal for the Oatmeal Festival, which is actually larger than Oatmeal itself. The festival is held by both Oatmeal and neighboring Bertram, Texas. This upcoming festival is the 46th, so I imagine they've got their festival skills honed and ready to go.
Luckily, it's not about eating hot oatmeal outside in September in Central Texas, as that seems deeply unpleasant. Per the Oatmeal Festival website, they actually have a lot going on:
The event starts Friday Night in Oatmeal with a Live Music, BBQ Dinner Fundraiser, Miss Oatmeal Pageant and Live Cake Auction.
On Saturday the fun continues in Bertram featuring a grand parade, pet parade, oatmeal bake-off, 3.3k ‘Run for Your Oats’ fun run, BBQ plate fundraiser, washer tournament, kid zone activities, booth vendors, live music and the event finishes with an evening street dance.
There is a Miss Oatmeal! I am deeply pleased by this.
Oatmeal is more than the festival, here are some Fun Facts:
In 2000, Oatmeal had a population of... 20.
The name "Oatmeal" was the result of residents mangling the pronunciation of the German mill owner's name Mr. Othneil.
The earliest recorded burials are from 1854.
The water tower is painted to look like, you guessed it, a box of oatmeal.
Following the Civil War, a group of liberated slaves started their own community in Oatmeal, known as Stringtown, which lasted until the 1920s.