Festival celebrates Dudie burger

By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – The past comes alive at the Dudie Burger Festival.
The annual festival is the Oren Dunn Museum’s biggest fundraiser, and it celebrates Dudie’s Diner, one of Tupelo’s most famous eateries decades ago. The original diner now sits on the museum’s grounds, and for the past several years, proceeds from the festival have gone to refurbish the diner.
The festival will serve up Dudie burgers, and for $25, two can eat their burgers in the diner, which is almost finished.
“We’re using the famous original recipe,” said Boyd Yarbrough, festival coordinator. “The festival is 1950s themed to go along with that era of diners.”
There will be plenty of kids’ activities, like a Goldfish eating contest, face painting, Volkswagen car painting, inflatables and train rides.
Old school games like hopscotch, ring toss and tic tac toe will also be available, and snacks like Coke floats and fiddlesticks will be for sale.
DJs will spin favorite golden oldies from the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, and there will be live music by Wishbone.
The Tupelo Police Department will have one of its helicopters on display, and folks can learn about tornado safety. There will also be a local celebrity dunking booth.
“The fire department will have one of its trucks on display, and you can compare it with an old diner-era fire truck we have here,” Yarbrough said.
The Oren Dunn Museum and Veterans’ Museum will both be free during the festival.
The museum raised $6,000 at last year’s event, which helped restore the diner.
“We want to beat that this year,” he said.

Go back in time
What: Dudie Burger Festival

When: 10 a.m.-3 p.m. May 4

Where: Oren Dunn Museum, Tupelo

Cost: Free/festival and admission into the Oren Dunn and Veterans’ Museums. $25 donation/eat a Dudie burger in the renovated Dudie’s
Diner. $5/armband for kids’ activities.

Info: (662) 841-6438

Click video to hear audio