by Bernard Reed
Cornbread is to Southern cuisine kind of like Faulkner is to Southern literature, or the word "y'all" is to our regional dialect: the standout you can't avoid twining into any sensible conversation on the subject, so ubiquitous and obvious and essential that it almost need not be mentioned at all.
Cornbread is, after all, bread, a benchmark in not only culinary but also cultural achievement (see our Native's Guide to cornbread in Arkansas on page 58). The Bernice Garden hosts this inaugural South Main celebration of cast-iron connoisseurs, professionals and amateurs who can do a thing or two with maize and butter, all while tapping their feet to blues and bluegrass.
Besides a cornbread competition and music there'll be vendors, a variety of family activities and "Cornbread Gospels" author Crescent Dragonwagon (who will also give a talk at noon at the Historic Arkansas Museum). Put down "The Sound and the Fury" and grab some comfort food that Faulkner would be proud of.