Cracker Fair 2023






  • Organized by the Lemon Bay Historical Society, annual Cracker Fairs are our gift to the community.
  • Admission is free. The Fair will run from 10am to 4pm.
  • Lemon Dessert Baking Contest sponsored by Lemon Bay Woman’s Club
  • There will be food vendors, live performers, crafts, demonstrations, authors and artists.
  • Watch the Bit of Hope Ranch give a whip-cracking demo
  • See and learn about animals brought by the Peace River Wildlife Center.
  • The CRACKER FAIR is the culmination of “Lemon Bay Fest,” February 4 – 11, a full week of local history events presented by the Englewood libraries. View the library schedule here.
The Cracker Fair is the culmination of the Lemon Bay Fest, a week of celebrating Englewood’s history produced by the 2 Englewood libraries. The Fair is also a fund-raiser for our community programs and our mission to preserve the fascinating history of the Lemon Bay area. 
We are pleased to present the following line-up of live entertainment on the new Dignam Family Stage at Pioneer Plaza:

A unique experience will be on hand when James Hawkins performs songs about our rich local history.

“I am a singer/songwriter from Venice, Florida. For about 10 years I have knocked around the Florida Folk scene performing in many different venues from coffee houses to a couple of concert halls.

“Some folks have described my music as a mix of Woody Guthrie and Harry Chapin but I leave that judgment up to you. I have a new radio called “Acoustic Waves” on WSLR 96.5.” James’ major project is called “Turn Back Time” which deals with Florida History through stories and songs and brings traditional Folk music and stories to the classroom.

Gottfried Creek is Bob Kinsley and Bill Keehne who hail from Ohio and Michigan and bring to us an eclectic mix of folk, bluegrass and 60s and 70 rock. They have performed at the Englewood Farmers Market, Lemon Bay Park and the Englewood Museum.

The name Gottfried Creek comes from pioneer settlers Otto and Ferdinand Gottfried who arrived here from Milwaukee in 1893 and lived in a palmetto shack located where New Comfort Road now intersects S.R. 776. Nearby they planted two acres of pineapples, cabbages and potatoes. Other family members soon joined them and circa 1900 they built a fine 2-story house on the creek that today bears their name.

Get ready to lift your spirits and travel back to the good old days. John Tuff & Friends started out over ten years ago. They performed all over Southwest Florida in a variety of venues featuring classic country music: music of legends, such as Johnny Cash, Hank Snow, Ernest Tubb, George Jones, Johnny Horton, and more, the kind of music many of us grew up with on the family radio.

We are pleased to have the wonderful talent of John Tuff and Friends return this year.

Established in 2020 Vinyl Recall is a three piece Eclectic Classic Rock band.

Paul Quinn has played guitar and sung for a number of years, and lives locally after having spent time in other states. Of necessity, he blends rhythm and lead playing, and tends to use his fingers, rather than a pick, for a different sound.

Jeff Dillon is a native Floridian and born in Venice. Jeff has been involved in the Performing Arts for 50 years. Drumming since his teens, he plays in a broad set of styles. He is pleased to be working with John, Paul, and Vinyl Recall.

John Munn has lived in Englewood since 2016. Love of music started early in this one in choirs and musical theatre. He picked up bass at age 13. He created Groovin’ In The Gallery open mic in 2018 at the Englewood Art Center that ran for a year and a half. Vinyl Recall is his first band and only band, so far.

Recall has played at Pop’s Sunset Grill, Tomahawk Tiki Bar @ CoolToday Park, Englewood Moose, Englewood Eagles Club, Englewood VFW, The Back Yard, Libby’s Sports Bar and Grill, Rumours Wine Bar, AllStar Bar and Grill, Salty Jim’s Bar and Grill. We are pleased to feature Vinyl Recall at this year’s CRACKER FAIR.


Key AgencyJeff Joyce ASB Dog Trainer
Michael J. LooneyWilliam Airey
Robert & Aileen CapozziMerrill’s Heating & A/C
Venice Pest ControlLemon Bay Woman’s Club
Southern Mower & TrailerXpertech Auto Repair
Lasbury-Tracy RealtyEnglewood Bank & Trust
Englewood CRAEnglewood FL Chamber of Commerce
StyleCraft CabinetryJessica K. Close ESQ
Suncoast Central RealtyBilly Kimberlin Roofing
Brian Faro Paradise ExclusiveHinck Private Wealth Management
Justin & Kimberly StiverAmy Gonzales Michael Saunders & Co
Janet Shawen Paradise ExclusiveMike Douglass Plumbing
Castle AirDebbie McClure
Dr. Kenneth LoundersA-1 Auto Care
Pope InsuranceMary Brown
Douglas P. IzzoWampler Varner Insurance Group
Joe Maxx CoffeeTony Babington, Paradise Exclusive
Prop it Up Photo BoothsR.J. Labadie Construction
A Better Scoop Ice CreamFlorida Home Mortgage / Xavier Financial
Jim Litton / Michael Saunders & CoThoroughbred Golf Carts
Island Air ConditioningFarlow's on the Water