KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
September 9, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
The City of Katy is excited to welcome Katyites in-person to this year’s Katy Rice Festival. All proceeds go to Katy students and charities. Volunteers and sponsors are needed for the city’s traditional event, which will be held October 8-10.
Historic Katy Rice Festival Returns to In-Person
Last year the pandemic forced the Katy Rice Festival to a virtual setting as one of Katy’s greatest traditions celebrated its 40th anniversary of community fun and charity. This year the city is preparing to return to an in-person event and needs volunteers.
“This will be our first live edition since 2019, says Katy Mayor Bill Hastings. “The Community has shown excitement over this event and we are excited about the opportunity to put together another great event.”
Celebrating 41 Years of Tradition
The Katy Rice Festival started in 1980 and was initially created to celebrate Katy's history and rice. Katy was known as the "Rice Capital of the World" and the remnants of that history can still be seen from I-10 in the form of the rice silos among the town's commercial growth and development.
The Katy Rice Festival brings the community together each year to celebrate Katy’s history and to give back to the residents. The historic event has been known to bring in crowds from 45-50,000.
“The Katy Rice Festival is also an amazing charitable event since all net proceeds will be donated to Katy students and charities through scholarships and donations by our partners at the Rotary Club of Katy,” says Mayor Hastings.
This past year the City of Katy completed the downtown plaza, which will be put to use during the festival where families can enjoy the new buildings and greenspace.
“The Katy Rice Festival is such a wonderful tradition for the citizens of Katy,” says Mayor Hastings. “I remember when my children were young and how excited they were each year to attend the festival and the wonderful memories that we made.”
Now Mayor Hastings and his wife Susan attend the festival with the grandchildren like so many Katy families.
“Seeing the festival through their eyes and the excitement on their faces is priceless,” says Mayor Hastings.
“I am very excited to be back in-person, with the traditional parade the week before and the festival to return to the mark not only our history as the rice capital of the world but also a community event,” says Mayor Pro Tem Chris Harris.
Festival Needs Volunteers, Sponsors
The Katy Rice Festival is seeking volunteers and sponsors. Learn more and get involved by visiting the website.
“Every volunteer hour allows funding to be donated to Katy kids and organizations such as Katy Christian Ministries,” says Harris.
The event kicks off Friday, October 8 with Octoberfest. Katy families can attend for free and enjoy entertainment, food trucks and beer from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on the Plaza in Downtown Historic Katy.
The festival continues with craft vendor shopping, entertainment, games, food, and much more Saturday, October 9 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday, October 10 noon to 6:00 p.m. Adults are $10 and children ages 12 and younger are free.
The Katy Rice Festival is taking precautions regarding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“COVID is still amongst us, but we have all learned to use the necessary precautions,” says Mayor Hastings.
The City of Katy plans to increase bathrooms, hand wash and sanitizing stations for participants to use.