FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Long Island Potato Festival Contestants Raise Trophies
High in the Air - Winners Announced
Riverhead, NY, - August 9, 2015 - The Long Island Potato Festival returned for its second year this past Sunday at Calverton Links Golf Course in Calverton, N.Y. with even more family fun. Tater fanatics gathered to sample a multitude of various flavored chips as well as potato products such as potato au gratin grilled cheese sandwiches, fries cooked in hop oil, and sweet potato iced tea. Local potato farmers such as Kujawski Farms and Martin Sidor Farms joined in on the fun sharing their farming history and bringing products such as potatoes and Sidor Farm's North Fork Potato Chips. With over 1,500 potato lovers in attendance, crowds gathered in the contest tent to watch as contestants in spud related activities competed head to head to see who would be deemed the tuber champions. Contests included:
• Amateur Potato Salad, contestants were judged by a panel of three judges, including two-time Food Network Chopped Champion Chef Marc Anthony Bynum from Hush Bistro in Farmingdale, Chef Justin Evans from Digger's Pub in Riverhead and John Nickles from North Fork Potato Chips in Cutchogue. Contestants had their potato salads judged on in four categories: presentation, creativity, use of potato, and overall taste.
• Mashed Potato Sculpting contest consisted of three categories: adult (18+), youth (13-17), and children (12 and under). Contestants were provided mashed potatoes by Wine Country Deli in Calverton and allowed to use any tools and materials to help sculpt a work of art (except for paint/food coloring). Sculptures were left on display throughout the day and were voted on by festival attendees.
• The Great Potato Peeling Race, consisted of three teams of four contestants each, competing to see who can skin their potatoes the quickest. Contestants were permitted to bring their own peeler although contest sponsor, Cutco Cutlery of Olean, provided peelers on-site. The team with the most peeled potatoes by weight in five minutes was crowned the winner. There was also a prize for the individual who peeled the most potatoes by weight of potatoes.
• Mashed Potato Eating, which consisted of three categories: adult (16+), youth (10-15), and children (9 and under) who pushed their stomachs to the limits had contestants race to see who could gobble their mashed potatoes in the fastest time. Children and youth each received a one pound bowl of mashed potatoes, while adults received a two pound bowl courtesy of Digger's Pub in Riverhead.
Winners walked away victorious with trophies and great prizes generously donated by Digger's Pub, Applebee's, Splish Splash, and Potatopia. 2015 Long Island Potato Festival Contest Winners include:
• Amateur Potato Salad - "Sweet Potato Salad" by Patricia Noren
• Mashed Potato Sculpting (Child) - "Car" by Josiah Peters
• Mashed Potato Sculpting (Youth) - "Sun" by Valentina Leone
• Mashed Potato Sculpting (Adult) - "Cat" by Christina Klein
• The Great Potato Peeling Race (Team) - 16lbs. and 4oz. by Peeling in Public
• The Great Potato Peeling Race (Individual) - 5lbs. and 8oz. by Sinisa "Charly" Savnik
• Mashed Potato Eating (Child) - 1lb. in 2 minutes and 58 seconds by Anthony Hoffman
• Mashed Potato Eating (Youth) -1lb. in 3 minutes and 5 seconds by Graham Whitbread
• Mashed Potato Eating (Adult) - 2lb. in 2 minutes and 22 seconds by Patrick Taylor
Contest photos can be found on the event website, LIPotatoFest.com, photos by Karl Mischler.
Keep checking in to LIPotatoFest.com for updates on next year's festival as we bring you more contests, fun, and potatoes! If you think you got what it takes to be the next top spud, make sure to register early as contests filled up quickly this year.
The Long Island Potato Festival would once again like to thank all of the contestants, judges, sponsors, volunteers, exhibitors, prize donors, and attendees who made the event a truly SPUD-tacular one! See you next year tater!
# # #