Madison’s Katherine Yates enjoys tea party at Neshoba County Fair

Madison’s Katherine Yates enjoys tea party at Neshoba County Fair


Madison’s Katherine Yates is making the most of her time at the Neshoba County Fair by hosting an annual tea party based on a famous children’s book. 

Yates, 8, lives in Madison with her family and attends St. Augustine School in Ridgeland. 

Her mother, Leigh Yates, said her daughter loves the Fair and starts preparing for it next year before the current Fair ends. 

“Katherine loves the Fair just like my husband and I loved it when I was around her age,” Yates said. “She loves it all - the food, games, events, you name it. She gets her invitations for the tea party done several weeks before the Fair even starts, along with picking her dress out. She also knitted a baby blanket for the Exhibit Hall there and won a ribbon at the Fair’s Clothes Line Art Contest.” 

Yates and her daughter stay in Cabin 163 on the Fairgrounds, known as “The Plaza.” The tea party tradition, which started in 2011 in the cabin, is inspired from the children’s book “Eloise at the Plaza.” The book tells the story of a little girl who lives in the "room on the tippy-top floor" of the Plaza Hotel in New York City with her nanny, her pug dog Weenie, and her turtle, Skipperdee.

Yates said her daughter invites her friends from Madison, Philadelphia and Carthage to the tea party and they all head home wanting warm tea.

The tea party happens on Monday at the Fair before the Miss Neshoba County Beauty Pageant and starts with Katherine Yates’ grandmother, Beth Jackson, reading “Eloise at the Plaza” to her and her friends, followed by refreshments with tea, petit fours, cookies, and other snacks. 

Leigh Yates said her family has lived in Madison for the past eight years and they love the area. 

“We go to Pine Lake Church in Madison and it’s our church home,” Yates said. “We especially love the big trees.”

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