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For nearly seventy years, thousands of visitors have descended upon Fort Fairfield in mid-July to enjoy the Maine Potato Blossom Festival and the nearly 100 family-friendly events the Festival has to offer.  Now those crowds will be invited to leave some room in their stomachs and their schedule and take part in a unique challenge of intestinal fortitude - the first ever Maine Potato Blossom Festival International Tater Tot Eating Competition on Saturday July 16th!

                “We’ve been talking about doing an eating competition of some sort since I became the Festival Director a year and a half ago,” stated Tim Goff.  “We toyed with a couple different potato dishes, and ultimately settled on tater tots for a couple reasons – one, who doesn’t like a pile of hot tater tots seasoned just right?  And two, everyone can eat a mess of them, so they can relate, they can count along as they disappear.  Our challenge is to see how fast can someone eat roughly 100 tots?  I’m curious to find out who answers the challenge and what kind of time they put up!”

                The rules for the event are fairly simple.  Competitors in each of the Men’s and Women’s divisions will be given a plate full of tots that contain between 100 and 110 tots (the portion will weight exactly two pounds before cooking) and five minutes to eat them.  The person who finishes with the fastest time will take home bragging rights, a trophy and a $100 gift card to Boondock’s Grille.  Youth, ages 12 to 17 with parental consent, will compete to eat a pound of tots (roughly 50 to 55) and the top two finishers will be rewarded with $50 gift cards.  Competitors will be required to keep what they ate on the inside for a minimum of five minutes after they finish or they will be disqualified.

                “We’re excited to be part of this new event during the Maine Potato Blossom Festival,” exclaimed Steve Adams, owner of Boondock’s Grille.  “Potatoes and competitions are two of the cornerstones of the Festival, so finding a new way to engage the thousands of people who come to town with an event that combines the two is something we eagerly joined in on.”

                The International Tater Tot Eating Competition is being sponsored by McCain Foods USA, Boondocks Grille and the Maine Agri-Women and will take place after the Maine Potato Blossom Festival Parade on Saturday July 16th at 3pm in the Food Court on Main Street.  Competitors are strongly encouraged to register in advance as space is limited to 30 participants in each division.  Slots will be filled on a first come, first served basis and registrations will not be complete until the competition waiver and registration form are filled out and the $5 entry fee is paid.  Forms  can be picked up at Boondock’s Grille or click on the following links to download:

International Tater Tot Eating Competition Rules

International Tater Tot Eating Competition Registration Form

International Tater Tot Eating Competition Waiver

                The International Tater Tot Eating Competition is just one of nearly 100 events scheduled for the 69th Annual Maine Potato Blossom Festival, which runs from July 9th through July 17th.  Other highlights include nightly performances in the Community Bandstand, four nights of music on the Festival Main Stage featuring a line-up of top local and regional acts, mashed potato wrestling and potato picking contests, pageants, athletic contests, food and craft vendors and much, much more!  For a full schedule of events, please click here