The weather was beautiful — and the crowd was hungry for all things cream cheese…
Welcome to Lowville Cream Cheese Festival Number Ten! All the wacky games, food, contests, entertainment, and cute pets that I’ve come to expect, plus perfect weather and a fun crowd.
In case you missed it, here are a few of the highlights from the festival. I didn’t get photos of the wacky pet contests this year, but there were plenty.
NCPR was media sponsor for the day. Kraft is a major sponsor of the festival, and it highlights Philadelphia Cream Cheese – their main product at the plant in Lowville. There is a recipe contest that’s world class…. look for some of the winning recipes in an upcoming Philadelphia Cream Cheese cookbook.
The whole town gets behind this festival, and it really shows. It’s my favorite event of the year.
Kraft Foods once again created the world’s largest cheesecake, delivered by refrigerated truck on this special stainless steel trailer. It was created and served by a team of volunteers who work for Kraft, and all 4,000 servings were GONE within a few hours!
Nothing but crumbs left. The cheesecake was great.
Of course, there was PLENTY of food everywhere at this festival! I was particularly fascinated with all the foods that you can get on a stick:
What Cheesecake-on-a-Stick really looks like.
These Taters also come on a stick…
There was also plenty of food that wasn’t served on a stick:
What does a banjo have to do with BBQ??? I feel a banjo joke coming on….
There was entertainment ALL day long:
… starting with Cubby and Cuddles the Clowns.
The Atkinsons delivered a great set of bluegrass music! This is Shelene and Dick, matriarch and patriarch of the band.
The Nelson Brothers – dairy farming brothers from Rome, NY – really had the street rocking with classic country music. These guys are stars!
Here are the Nelsons off-stage… still rock stars.
Next up: an oldies band called Good Golly (yes, they opened with that song!).
Of course, the Lowville Cream Cheese Festival is also a celebration of local agriculture and agribusiness. There was plenty of JD green around:
Something for everyone.
There’s nothing like a crowd to draw politicians – and giant talking heads!
Lowville Academy has a community service requirement for all students. These girls were doing a stellar job on trash duty, and put in a long day of work. Other volunteer students set up/took down chairs, hay bales, shoveled, swept, hauled, lifted and otherwise kept the festival ticking throughout the day. Well done, volunteers!!
.. and there were SO MANY WACKY GAMES! Here’s just a small sample:
That’s right… Cream Cheese Bingo.
Throw the blob of cream cheese at the Bingo board… and that’s how it’s done. It’s hard to see, but this board is covered with blobs of cream cheese.
This is the Cream Cheese Toss — a lot like baseball… or… soft ball. Think soft blobs of cream cheese, thrown by your team partner. See how many you can hit (with the bat) in under a minute. That’s Lowville mayor Donna Smith in the green T-shirt – marking time for this competition. She’s mighty brave — just look at the ground around her! Also note the cream cheese on the left contestant’s nose — she just kept right on swinging! What a trooper!
Dauber is the Cream Cheese Man at the festival. He greets folks who are waiting in line for cheesecake. He coaches kids who are painting on the cream cheese mural, and he’s sort of a cream cheese ambassador.
Notice how white Dauber is at the beginning of the day….
… and how colorful he is after being ‘painted’ by so many kids. I would not want to drive home in that outfit!
The crowds were huge, but happy.
There was even a Discovery Center (large enclosed area with dozens of child-friendly distractions) for kids:
… and lots of face painting.
The Lowville Cheese Store was there in force, wearing their wacky hats and selling GREAT cheese!
All the cheese sold at the Lowville Cheese Store is made from local milk. It is part of the local farmers’ co-op. They offer samples of every kind of cheese they sell, which makes them VERY popular at this festival! You can’t miss the store as you drive through Lowville – it’s on the south end of town, sporting Miss Lewinda the huge cow in front of the store… often wearing huge sunglasses.
So… it was a great, full day of festivities and fun. I’ve been there every year – for all ten of the festivals, and I think this year was the very best so far.
In case you’re beating yourself up over missing it, don’t fret — they’re celebrating Halloween at the end of the month!
Hope to see you next year at the Cream Cheese Festival! For more information, visit www.CreamCheeseFestival.com