Neches River Festival

Queen Neches LXVIII Olivia Katherine Lombardo
King Neches Joseph Vincent Tortorice Jr. with his wife Shelley

For 68 years, spring has been welcomed by Beaumont’s Good Neighbor event — the Neches River Festival.

The NRF has remained one of the most illustrious events in Beaumont since its inception and continues to be a mainstay, celebrating youth, tradition and the Neches River, a resource for Southeast Texas.

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All hail the king … Tuesday afternoon, March 29, the 68th Neches River Festival king and his escorts traveled down the Neches River and docked at the Beaumont Country Club.

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Caroline Wied, Mitch Smith, and Joy Crenshaw

For 67 years, spring has been welcomed by Beaumont’s Good Neighbor event — the Neches River Festival.

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The Neches River Festival parade scheduled for Saturday, April 18, has been canceled due to inclement weather, according to organizers. All other activities related to the festival remain on track and on schedule, so check out the website at nechesriverfestival.com for more details and for event times and locations.

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This year’s Neches River Festival King is Mitch Smith.

Saturday, April 18, at 10 a.m., the Neches River Festival Parade will start at South MLK Parkway and Bonham Street. The parade will continue north down MLK, turn east on Calder Avenue toward downtown Beaumont and then turn south on Park Street.

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Mary Claire Benning, Janie Steinhagen, Mary Jane Benning

The Neches River Festival (NRF) has remained one of the most illustri­ous events in Beaumont since its incep­tion in the late 1940s.

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photo by Albert Nolan

Patrick Phelan was unveiled as the Neches River Festival King in a ceremony Tuesday, April 1. Phelan was NRF Citizen of the Year in 1981. Patrick Phelan and his wife, Kathryn Odom Phelan, will soon celebrate 50 years of marriage. A graduate of St.

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