If you live in Waynesville, Missouri, you can win the opportunity to kiss a live frog. Don't laugh, it's kind of a big deal in Waynesville, which hosted its thirteenth annual Frog Fest yesterday. The festival has been held since 1997 to honor Waynesville's Frog Rock, "W.H.Croaker," created by local artist Phil Nelson.
There's frog racing, frog adoptions, frog t-shirts, and yes, frog legs for snacking.
But don't forget the large live frog kissing.
To win this once in a lifetime opportunity, contenders collect donations at the Frog Fest. This year's winner, Darrell Todd Maurina, owner of the Pulaski County Daily News, collected $39.24.
Why am I blogging about frog-kissing at Practical Paralegalism? Previous winners include local paralegal Sheila Debo. Sheila actually had a hand in the creation of W.H. Croaker and the start of this annual event:
You see, several years ago the Missouri Department of Transportation was widening the roadway into Waynesville and it was necessary to do a lot of blasting to the mountainside and when they were done it left an outcropping of rock that many said looked like a very familiar shape. Well the ladies at Waynesville City Hall (Barbara Stinson, Toni Wright & Sheila Debo) decided to do something with the outcropping and called Phil Nelson, the operator of Blue Rose Tattoo, who shaped and painted the rock into the likeness of a frog, me, W.H. Croaker. The ladies were interested in starting an annual event that was set in the cool springtime and with the new rock frog on the hill they made that the theme. Now with many more members to the committee it is growing into a grand event, so hop on down and have a good time.
Mama always said you have to kiss a few frogs to find your prince. But some people just like kissing frogs. Movie star Cameron Diaz once said, "I'd kiss a frog even if there was no promise of a Prince Charming popping out of it. I love frogs. I'd lick him."
Well, there you go. If they haven't already done so, the Frog Fest committee should invite Cameron to next year's festival. I bet she'd win.