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M&M Farms get top rank in Peach Auction

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Managing Editor

The Peach Festival Peach Auction was a successful day of fundraising for the Clanton Lions Club.

The event was especially meaningful to M&M Farms as it again won first place in the annual judging of the peaches.

“It means a lot. I know Dad (Mark Knight) would be proud, and that’s what means the most,” Andrea Williams of M&M Farms said.

Mark Knight, half of the namesake of M&M Farms, died on June 6.

His wife Melissa Knight, also half of the namesake of M&M Farms, was present at the peach auction and accepted a plaque of appreciation from the Clanton Lions Club in memory of Mark Knight.

The winning basket was a Paul Friday 24007, and it was auctioned off for $4,000 to benefit the Lions Club.

“It is a peach we always watch for (to use in) the peach auction,” Williams said. “We have won with it before.”

As first place winner, M&M Farms received $2,500. The second, third, fourth and fifth place also received a cash prize.

This season has been good for peaches.

“Overall, we have had a pretty good crop,” Williams said. “We did have some damage and then the rain the last few weeks has not been helpful in some ways, but helpful in others.”

She said rain can cause diseases in the fruit, but it can also help the peaches grow larger.

During the auction, auction co-chair Glenn McGriff thanked those who bid on the peaches.

Each grower receives $50 per basket for participating.

The funds raised go toward scholarships, donations to local nonprofits and donations to Alabama Sight made by the Lions Club.

“We are a nonprofit,” McGriff said. “We give all of our money back to the community, so all of the money that we raise here today helps Chilton County. I always say I love Chilton County because each county has to have identity. We have identity … these beautiful peaches.”