They say April showers bring May flowers. Or, when it rains it pours.
In either case, grab a fork and take cover under the nearest tablecloth for this end-of-the-month deluge of food-related events. Many of these events are fundraisers, so that should even out the guilt factor for over-indulging.
Food Truck Parranda: Enjoy the authentic taste of Latin America with 10 of the Midlands’ best Latin food trucks and carts. Part of the Indie Grits Visiones, this event will include live music and other activities, in addition to foods like arepas, pupusas, tacos and raspados.
Noon-5 p.m. in the 1000 block of Hampton Street, between Richland Library and St. Peter’s Catholic Church. Free admission, but food will be sold at the trucks – Chazito’s Latin Cuisine, Family Fresh Tacqueria, Manny’s Dessert Shop, Mary’s Arepas, Mimie’s International Cuisine, Pupuseria Sandra, Real Mexico, Tacos Nayarit, Taco Time and Venezuela In One Bite.
Pork in the Park: A Southern Barbecue Network sanctioned competition, buy your tickets early to sample some of the region’s best barbecue and beer. Live bluegrass music, children’s games and activities. Proceeds benefit Relay for Life of Newberry.
11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at Memorial Park, 1000 Boyce St., Newberry. Free admission. Tickets for barbecue samples available in advance at Harvey’s of Newberry or at the gate; $5 for 14 samples, while supplies last. www.cityofnewberry.com
Sheep Shearing Day at Old McCaskill’s Farm: Visit the working farm during the annual sheep shearing, watch border collies herd sheep, demonstrations of spinners, weavers, quilters, and blacksmithing. Working saw mill and grits mill on site. Bring a cooler for purchases from the farm store.
10 a.m.-6 p.m. at Old McCaskill’s Farm, 377 Cantey Lane, Rembert. $5 for adults, free for children under age 2; farm concessions available. (803) 432-9537, www.oldmccaskillsfarm.com.
S.C. Cornbread Festival: Come out to sample the many varieties of cornbread, enter your own to see whether it’s the best, or compete to eat as much cornbread as you can. Bring a chair or blanket and spend the afternoon with live music, kids’ activities, a classic cornhole tournament and the Little Miss Corn Muffin Pageant. Proceeds benefit the Buddy & Benjamin Literacy Program and the North Columbia Revitalization Project.
11 a.m.-7 p.m. at Earlewood Park, 1111 Parkside Drive. $5 in advance, $7 at gate; $2 children ages 6-12, free for ages 5 and under, 70 and older, and military with ID. Cornbread Alley, $4; car and bike show registration, $10; classic cornhole tournament (admission included with registration fee): $25/single pro, $50/doubles pro, $10/family/amateur single, $20/family/amateur doubles. www.sccornbreadfestival.com or www.eventbrite.com
Shrimp, Shaggin’ & Suds: Feast on a Lowcountry shrimp boil, enjoy beer and wine, then dance the night away. Hosted by the Lexington County Recreation and Aging Commission, to benefit Meals on Wheels Program in Lexington County.
Slow Food Columbia’s Sustainable Chef Showcase: Slow Food Columbia has challenged some of the city’s most sustainable chefs to create a dish featuring at least one locally, sustainably produced major ingredient. You get to savor the results from Frank Bradley (Bourbon), Mike Davis (Terra), Wes Fulmer (Motor Supply Co. Bistro), Travis Rayle (Hunter Gatherer), Josh Rogerson (Saluda’s), Bryan Tayara (Rosewood Market & Deli) and Todd Woods (The Oak Table).
4-7 p.m. at City Roots Farm, 1005 Airport Blvd. $25 for Slow Food Columbia members, $35 for non-members; cash bar with wines and local beers. www.brownpapertickets.com
A Chef’s Feast: Chefs Frank Lee (formerly of S.N.O.B., Charleston) and Russell Jones (Tallulah) host guest chefs Mimie Holmes (Mimie’s International Cuisine), Ramone Dickerson (2 Fat 2 Fly & Wing City), Teryi Youngblood (Passerelle Bistro, Greenville) and Steven Musolf (Lazy Goat, Greenville) as they create a multi-course meal with wine pairings to benefit the Transitions Homeless Center in Columbia.
Sweet & Savory fundraiser: You choose the winner as Midlands’ chefs compete for the title of best sweet and savory dishes. Proceeds benefit Palmetto Place programs for homeless teens and services for children of all ages who have been abused and neglected.
6-9 p.m. at the S.C. State Museum’s Planetarium lobby, 301 Gervais St. $40, or $75 for couples. Available at palmettoplaceshelder.org/ss2017 or at the door.
Dine Out for Life: Participating Columbia area restaurants will donate a portion of their proceeds sold April 28 during breakfast, lunch and/or dinner to the SC HIV/AIDS Council for education outreach services. Proceeds stay in the Midlands.
Sparkleberry Country Fair: A weekend of rides and fun, food, hands-on education, gardening and farm animals.
April 28-30 at Clemson Sandhills Research & Education Center, 900 Clemson Road. Friday, April 28, amusement rides only 4-10 p.m.; Saturday, April 29, cancer awareness run/walk at 8 a.m., country fair 9 a.m-5 p.m, amusement rides 9 am.-10 p.m., parade, 11:45 a.m.; Sunday, April 30, amusement rides only 1-8 p.m. $5 per vehicle, with proceeds going to scholarships and grants to local schools. www.sparkleberrycountyfair.org
Butcher Paper Dinner Series: Crawfish Boil: It’s a friendly free-for-all as you gather ’round the table and eat directly from the pile of fresh steamed crawfish, corn on the cob, potatoes and other vegetables. Learn the proper way to eat a crawfish before the Rosewood Crawfish Festival in May.
3-7 p.m. at City Roots Farm, 1005 Airport Blvd. Tickets $45/person; cash/credit bar. Crawfish Boil ticket holders will receive free entry to the Rosewood Crawfish Festival on May 7. www.farmtotableeventco.com
South Carolina Food Truck & Craft Beer Festival: Bring a chair (or blanket), and a hat or sunscreen. Hosted by Foodtruck Festivals of America, this event has everything from burgers and barbecue to turkey wings and shaved ice. Some of the best regional craft beer will be available for purchase.
Noon-6 p.m. at S.C. State Fairgrounds, 1200 Rosewood Drive. $5 in advance, $10 at the gate. VIP ticket (allows early admission at 11 a.m. + one free dessert + unlimited bottled water), $20 in advance, $25 at the gate. Free for ages 12 and under. $5 parking at fairgrounds. www.foodtruckfestivalsofamerica.com
Under the Table Spring Feast: Oak Table’s executive chef Todd Woods and executive chef Elliot Cusher of Indaco in Charleston pair a feast of five courses with beer from Fullstream Brewery. Proceeds to benefit Harmony School Flood Recovery fund in Forest Acres.