The Evolution of Fair Food


By Aimee Burnett

Filer, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) County fairs are a tradition dating back to the mid–18oos.

Fairs were developed as a way to promote modern farming through livestock judging, exhibits of new agricultural implements and techniques and plowing contests.

Now, one of the biggest draws is the food.

Traditional fair foods like funnel cakes and elephant ears remain today, But as time changes so do people's tastes.

"About seven years ago we started the fry end of this. So, it's ice cream in the front, funnel cakes, funnel dogs in the back," said Craig Stringer, food vendor, Twin Falls County Fair.
Craig stringer's business, Nut Sundae on a Stick, has evolved throughout the years.

"You know we used to have taco spaghetti here that was really a hit. Chicken used to be here. Now everything is fried," said Stringer.

For nearly three decades he's been a food vendor at the Twin Falls County Fair… his food selections changing with the times. New this year is the funnel dog.

"It's a hot dog in funnel batter with the same sweet toppings on it. It seems to be going over well," Stringer explained.

The fried food frenzy is one of the factors contributing to America's ever expanding waste line, but that doesn't mean you need to forego your favorite fair foods.

"You know everything in moderation is of course the message we want to promote. And, I always say live by the 90-10 rule. You know 10 percent of the time have fun enjoy. You know have those fair foods," said Kyli Gough, Dietician, St. Luke’s Magic Valley.

So, sit back, relax and enjoy a piece of fair history.

We've got everything from fried snickers, to funnel dogs to ice cream... you just gotta come try it," said Stringer.

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