~HISTORY~
The 71st Florida Azalea Festival
March 4 & 5, 2017
         
The Florida Azalea Festival is held the first full weekend in March in Historic
Downtown Palatka, Florida. One of the oldest festivals in Florida, the Florida Azalea
Festival began in 1936 and started as Jaycees Days, a community fund raiser for the
local club.

The featured attraction was the first official Florida Azalea Pageant, which was held in
the Ravine Gardens State Park in Palatka, FL. The amphitheater was later built in the
park to host the annual Azalea Pageant. The Florida Azalea Pageant is the oldest
running pageant in the state of Florida. The event out grew the park in later years.

The Azalea Festival  is located along the banks of the beautiful St. Johns River and
down St. Johns Ave.  The event is free for the whole family featuring live
entertainment, arts
& crafts vendors, food and azaleas in bloom.  

Featured events are the Florida Azalea Beauty Pageant, an Antique Automobile Club
of America Car Show, a Bowling Tournament, a Shriners' Parade, and a whole lot
more!  

The festival has changed throughout the years and now averages 35,000–40,000
people during the two day event.
Neva Jane Langley vied to be Miss
Florida Azalea Queen in 1949.  
She became Miss America in 1953.
SM