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Produce Display at Yuma Lettuce Days, 1999
Display of Yuma's agricultural bounty at Yuma Lettuce Days, January 1999 Photo: Laretta Geren

Yuma Lettuce Days

This annual two-day winter event promotes the local lettuce industry and Arizona-grown products, focusing on Yuma County as an agricultural and tourist region rich in history. Sponsored by Yuma Main Street, Inc., it is held in the historic downtown section of Yuma, which is known as the "Lettuce Capital of the World." Yuma County is renowned for its winter-grown produce; over 90% of the world's lettuce crop is grown in the region's fertile soils from November through March. Lettuce is the leading crop in the $900-million-a-year agricultural industry in the county, which is watered by the Colorado and Gila Rivers. Varieties grown include head lettuce, leaf lettuce, and romaine.

Celebrating the area's agricultural heritage, Yuma Lettuce Days and features farm equipment, produce displays, live entertainment and arts. A "Salad Toss-Off," in which local celebrities vie for the prized "Best Salad" award, takes place on Saturday with local celebrities as contestants. All proceeds from the contest benefit agricultural scholarships. Other events include the appearance of "Lucy Lettuce," live entertainment on two stages, jugglers, musicians, country-western music, and educational exhibits on local agriculture and the display of large farm equipment.

Documentation consists of an eight-page report describing the festivities, the history of lettuce and lettuce-growing in Yuma, and facts about its cultivation; and ten 8 x 10 color photographs with accompanying descriptions.

Originally submitted by: Ed Pastor, Representative (2nd District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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