The Pawpaw Festival

Lydia Ramlo

Lydia Ramlo,
Senior, Civil Engineering (Russ College) and Environmental Studies (Honors Tutorial College)

Athens, OH 16 September 2019

One of my favorite weekends of the entire year is Pawpaw Festival weekend! I have been going every year since my sophomore year. Many people may not know what exactly a paw paw is, so if you want to learn a fun fact keep on reading.

A pawpaw is the largest edible fruit that is native to North America, particularly in Appalachia. It is a cousin to a mango but tastes and has texture more similar to a banana. I’ve found pawpaws on hikes through my years in Athens. Dr. Riefler (one of my professors) has a pawpaw tree in his yard and brought samples into class one day!


The Pawpaw Festival has local vendors ranging from arts and crafts to food to music! And yes, there are free paw paw samples as well. My personal favorite is the Snowville’s paw paw ice cream.

This festival is a great way to bond with friends and connect with the Athens community. While I was a Voinovich Research Scholar, I was able to volunteer at the Raccoon Creek’s tent to explain about acid mine drainage and the importance of sustainability in the southeast Ohio area. Sustainability, friends, and some weird fruit—what’s not to love!

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