Avocado Aficionados Go Carpinteria

Carp's creamiest moment is deliciously due.

IF YOU WERE TO REALLY DIG DEEP... in terms of your avocado affections, and we don't just mean with a spoon, you'd know the parts of the alligator pear as well as you know your own name. We don't just mean "skin" and "creamy inside scoopable stuff" and "pit," no sirree. Rather, you'd be tossing around terms like "exocarp" and "mesocarp" and "endocarp" for what we would normally deem the outer layer, the creamy inside scoopable stuff, and an area that's a little closer to the middle. As for the pit? Well, it is a seed, though pit, as a well-loved term, seems here to stay. And we'll wager that a whole lot of attendees at the annual California Avocado Festival know the official avocado terminology. Though, on second thought, with some 100,000 people showing up at the Carpinteria-based bash over a three-day weekend, just as many people, if not more, probably also affectionately describe an avocado's bits in ways that we all understand ("yummy middle" and "bumpily shell" and so forth). However you talk about the beloved fruit, count on having a lot of it, in all of its many forms, at the mega, not-too-far-from-the-beach celebration, which will grow, like an avocado pit -- er, seed -- from Friday, Oct. 2 through Sunday, Oct. 4.

BEING A LARGE AFFAIR... means there's lots beyond the famous pear in question, from live music to guacamole-making contests to a competition to brandish the largest avocado (we'll guess it is no match, in size, for those colossal pumpkins heading for weigh-in at Half Moon Bay in October, but still, a big avocado is to be applauded). There shall be many a vendor, too, selling both the avocado in its natural, just-plucked-from-the-branch form to ice creams and dips and more. How is your favorite way to take it? In an omelet, a club sandwich, in a burrito, or all of the above? The infinitely pleasing avo really can show up inside most any dish and the dish'll be elevated, instantly. This Carp party -- there's an avocado confab in Fallbrook, too, in the springtime -- is almost three decades along, which makes it venerable on the fruit festival scene. Of course, every avocado worshiper might describe his or her love for the foodstuff as long-lasting and true-blue -- er, true-green -- too. So keep on truckin', Avofest; your longevity suits your star food well.

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