Gates Open to Trails West! Festival

Gates Open to Trails West! Festival

Preparations to feed hungry crowds begins early.

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Giant bratwurst, corn dogs and fried candy bars! It must be time for a festival.

This is just a sampling of what you might see from the food vendors at this year’s Trails West! Festival in St. Joseph.

“This is the weekend you can throw the diet away and go back to dieting next week!” said Donna Lovett, who has come with the Catering Company from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

Preparation begins early for the effort to feed the hungry crowds.

“[You start by] running your numbers from last year, seeing what you sold, buying the food, stocking the food, cleaning the trailer,” said Kenny Birkholz, who comes with K&C Concessions from Paola, Kansas for the fifth year.

He and his wife specialize in steak sandwiches and one special dessert – the Chocolate Covered Frozen Turtle Cheesecake.

“We go down to Texas for the NASCAR race and those two items won down there for a food competition.  We won the ‘Taste of the Track,’ with the top two vote getters,” Birkholz said.

The chocolate covered cheesecake comes conveniently on a stick.

What is it about those foods on a stick?!

“It makes it easy for you to eat and walk around.  You can do two things at once!” Lovett said, explaining why she also sells some fair food favorites on a stick.

If you’re feeling exotic, take it to the Mediterranean with some Greek food.

“We have the most majestic food in town,” says George Theodorakos from the Greek Booth.  “People come from outer space just to get our food.  Most likely people enjoy the good food.  They’re not suckers for hot dogs and hamburgers.”

Theodorakos says the Greek Booth will go through hundreds of pounds of food in a weekend.

And with fresh ingredients, that’s a lot of prep work.

As in years past, Trails West! food vendors take food and drink tickets.

The ticket booth can be found on the western edge of the food vendors’ row.


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