Written By: Eliza Berman

America has its share of holidays that don’t quite rise to the level of, say, Thanksgiving, and National Pickle Week would be among them. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t fun to be had on such occasions. For instance: during the inaugural Pickle Week celebration in 1949, a Mr. Dill Pickle— a fortuitously named resident of Mississippi—went floating in a giant vat of pickles.

In what may be the most alliterative article ever published in LIFE magazine—”Packers preach their product’s perfection with a peck of publicity,” reads the deck below the headline—an image of Mr. Pickle appears above a description of the activities organized by the National Pickle Packer’s Association:

They invented liquor-flavored pickles, crowned a Pickle Queen amid flaming pickles in a Chicago nightclub, and proclaimed as their Man of the Year Mr. Dill Lamar Pickle of Rolling Fork, Miss., who obligingly posed in a vat of pickles.

As you can see from the photos, the Three Stooges even joined in on the merriment.

From a business standpoint, the week was a success: Pickle sales increased by 22%. From a floating-in-a-vat-of-brined-cucumbers perspective: also a major win.

Liz Ronk edited this gallery for LIFE.com. Follow her on Twitter @lizabethronk.

Mr. Dill Pickle of Mississippi reclines happily in a rubber boat amid 204,681 soggy pickles.

Mr. Dill Pickle (that’s his name) of Mississippi reclined happily in a rubber boat amid 204,681 soggy pickles.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

A giant pickle adorned the front of a car for National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

Men took a break after stacking barrels of pickles for National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

Man showing off pickles for National Pickle Week, 1949.

A man delivered a presentation on pickles during National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

Drinking out of a pickle, National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

A woman put finishing touches on a gigantic pickle, National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949. With the Three Stooges.

The Pickle Queen posed with the Three Stooges during National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

The Pickle Queen, National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

Models showing off pickles for National Pickle Week, 1949.

Models showed off pickles for National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

National Pickle Week, 1949.

Group shot with Pickle Queen, the Three Stooges and others during National Pickle Week, 1949.

Francis Miller The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images

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