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20190109 TCF Product Costume Show jmb 0070This weekend the Texas Citrus Fiesta is hosting three competitions all rolled into one big event where the winners will be announced. The Product Costume Show is the main event, and those attending the show will see all of this year’s costumes as they are presented to the judges.

The Shoebox Float Competition winners will also be announced and all of the miniature floats will be on display.

And, finally, the entries in the Ultimate Grapefruit Pie Baking Showdown will also be judged and the winners announced at the event.

The big day is Saturday, Jan. 12, beginning at 2 p.m., at the Mission Community Center.

20190109 TCF Product Costume Show jmb 0029The pie contest is open to anyone who would like to participate. Two pies must be submitted, one for judging and one for display. The pies must be delivered to the Mission Community Center, 1420 E. Kika De la Garza Loop, between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., Saturday. The entry fee is $10, which must be paid at the time of delivery with exact cash. Contestants are allowed to attend the show free but other guests must pay to get in the show. Admission is $5 per person and includes all three events.

The pies will be judged on overall appearance, overall flavor and use of grapefruit. The decision of the judges is final. First place will receive a trophy and medal; second and third places will receive medals.

20190109 TCF Product Costume Show jmb 0059Winter Texans who enjoy arts, crafts and creativity will not want to miss the product costume folk art that originated here in the Rio Grande Valley 81 years ago. Costumes in the show are made from agricultural products grown in the Rio Grande Valley. The theme for this year’s costumes is the “Texas Citrus Fiesta Celebrates Hollywood Movies.”

All costumes must have at least 10 percent citrus but a variety of other products that are native to the Valley are used. Products such as onion skin, which if often used for lace, bougainvillea leaves, for pink colors, banana leaves, palm leaves and a host of other products are used.

It takes many hours to make these costumes. The products that have been dehydrated, ground and otherwise prepared are glued to base costumes made of a material with a knap. Each year the designers get more creative and some of the costumes are simply fantastic.

20190109 TCF Product Costume Show jmb 0047This year, there are eight costumes and three hats in the show. The show has been written up in national magazines on several occasions during its 81-year history. The style show was started one year after the Texas Citrus Fiesta began as a way to draw attention to Texas citrus.

The show will once again be held at the Mission Community Center, located at 1420 E. Kika De la Garza Loop. Sylvia Vick, chairman of the Texas Citrus Fiesta Product Costume Show, said it had previously been announced the show would be held at a different location, but due to a conflict it was moved back to the Mission Community Center – the same location as last year. Doors open at 1:30 p.m. and the show starts at 2 p.m.

The miniature floats in the Shoebox Float Contest are created by fourth and fifth graders from local schools using many of the same processed products that are used in the Product Costume Show to cover the floats.

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