Bacon and Brew Fest is Saturday
KIIC along with Cargill, Ottumwa are teaming up for the area’s first Bacon and Brew event Saturday August 23rd at the Bridgeview Center. The event replaces the O-Town BBQ fest that has been held in June at the same location. Joe Milledge, Owner of Thunder Country KIIC says they wanted to provide a fun event that featured the growing popularity of Bacon. “Iowans love their bacon and we have some great chefs who will be showcasing all you can do with the beloved pork product. Our event is different from all the other bacon events, in that there is no admission charge, and attendees simply pay $1 for a sample of bacon or brew” said Milledge. He went on to say that the event will include fun events for the kids too. “Community 1st Credit Union will offer a free Kidz Zone area where youngsters can get face paintings, ride the train, jam in our ‘glow room’ or a multitude of other fun games and prize giveaways”
Cargill which processes pork at its Ottumwa operations is sponsoring the event and why wouldn’t they? The Ottumwa operation is a leading area employer and is one of the largest processors of the pork in the country. They provided over 1000 pounds of bacon for the vendors to use in their creations, but one vendor went a different route. Albia Brewing Company has been working on a new ‘Bacon Brew’ made with bacon also provided by Cargill. Brian Lindberg, owner at Albia Brewing said they were excited to get involved with this event. “We make some interesting brews here from our Soap Creek Shandy to our Jalapeno Pilsner that we thought what better brew to make that a bacon flavored concoction. Of the 6 ‘Craft’ brews that the Des Moines Register cited as ‘Brews you have to try at the Iowa State Fair’, the Bacon and Brew fest in Ottumwa will have 3 of them. “We were excited to see the list the Register published last week, because it meant we picked the right ones for our event” Milledge added.
In addition to free admission and the free Kidz Zone area, there is also free entertainment by Tony Blew, The Crushers, Rude Mood and Mitch Goudy with Diana Upton-Hill.
If you don’t get your fill of bacon food items from the vendors, Cargill is building a 515 foot-long BLT that attendees can get a slice of by simply bringing a canned food item donation for the Food Bank of Southern Iowa.
The event will be indoors, and Milledge says they are converting the expo hall into a ‘BaconTown’. Just what does that mean? “You’ll have to come see” he adds. The event is from 2-11pm with the separate Kidz Zone area from 2-6.