Traverse City, Michigan has a national cherry festival. Monroe, Wisconsin holds cheese days. Both cities’ identities are tied to their foods. So where’s the fête that inextricably links a city to chips?
Wait no more! Potato Chip World has learned the first national chip festival will happen this July 16, in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Saratoga Springs holds significance in the origin story of potato chips. According to lore, Moon’s Lake House is considered as the birthplace of the potato chip. It was there that, allegedly, chef George Crum trolled a fussy diner by cooking ridiculously thin and crispy potatoes.
Smarty, the Saratoga Springs Lions Club (the festival organizers) saw an opportunity to link their city with chips, and launch the festival.
I spoke with Greg Dixon, one of the leads on the festival, regarding their approach. It sounds legit: with several exhibitors representing large producers (Wise) and small local brands (West Virginia’s Mister Bee), the festival should have a great and diverse representation of chip brands. There’s also going to be an exhibition with chip memorabilia, and a “best of show” chip contest as well.
Dixon said they expect thousands of attendees for the one-day festival. If this is a success, the chip festival should grow in stature. And they would be a more tasty option than the current first spot in Google’s organic search results for “national chip festival”.
Details on how to attend the festival are available here.