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A Lafayette County Resident’s Hay Bale Tradition

Photo courtesy of Whitney Rayner.

Oxford natives Whitney Rayner and her husband, Kip, have been seasonally decorating a hay bale located just past Country Road 311 on eastbound Highway 6. The couple paints and decorates the hay bale for most major holidays and Ole Miss sports seasons.

“Typically, in a year we’ll do one for basketball season, an Easter bunny, a baseball, a sunshine for the summer, a football helmet, one for Halloween, a turkey and one for Christmas,” Rayner said. She has recently added a few new themes including a heart for Valentine’s Day and a Grinch for Christmas.
The couple got the inspiration for the idea when they saw another decorated hay bale in Highlands, North Carolina, and they have been painting and decorating their own for the past ten years.
Rayner loves seeing people taking pictures with it and hearing feedback from the community.

Photo courtesy of Whitney Rayner.

“Whenever I don’t get one up very soon, people will stop me and say, ‘We haven’t seen the new hay bale’,” Rayner said. “So, I think people enjoy it. They always say they can’t wait to see what will go up next.”
The hay bale has even become a directional piece for Rayner’s neighborhood. “People always say ‘Take a right before the hay bale to get to our neighborhood’,” Rayner said.
The hay bale has grown into a tradition for the couple and for the Oxford community, which is why Rayner is always looking for new ideas and loves to put it out on the highway.

By Trevor Davis, intern at hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at tmdavis5@go.olemiss.edu.
For more questions or comments email us at hottytoddynews@gmail.com

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