Friday, July 16, 2010

12th Annual World's Largest Catsup Bottle Festival!!

As you have probably noticed, Peter and I recently developed a, sort of, obsession for going out of our way to see random/big/pointless/monumental type things. One day Peter was surfing the web and he came across some information for this festival coming up on July 11, 2010. He immediately set his heart on going, he was so excited. At first, I was a little skeptical, but I quickly warmed up to the idea and I too became very excited to experience this unique annual festival.

This is no ordinary festival, it is basically a birthday party for the World's Largest Catsup Bottle. I kid you not, they sing happy birthday to the giant catsup bottle and everything! There were actually quite a few events planned for the day of celebration. The days events looked something like this:

7:30am - Trailnet's Big Bottle Bike ride
10:00am - Car, Truck, and Motorcycle Show Registration
11:00am - Opening Ceremony
11:00am - Little Princess Tomato and Sir Catsup Contest
11:45am - Hot Dog (Smothered in Catsup) Eating Contest
12:15pm - Singing of Happy Birthday and Cutting of the Cake
12:30pm - Ronald McDonald Magic Show
1:00pm - Old-fashioned Birthday Party Games
2:00pm - Hula Hoop Contest
2:30pm - Water Balloon Toss
4:30pm - Awards
5:00pm - Saying Goodbye

Looks like a blast huh?? =D

So, Peter and I drove 45 minutes away to Collinsville, Illinois to join in on the famous (in Collinsville at least) celebration. We pulled up to the site of the festival excited to see the World's Largest Catsup Bottle for the first time. However, we couldn't see it anywhere. We saw tons of nice cars getting ready for the car show. We saw a stage and heard music. We saw tons of vendors and kids activities. But no Catsup Bottle, which was the reason we were there. We found out that the festival was not actually at the site of the Catsup Bottle (which is actually the towns water tower in the shape of and painted like a catsup bottle), it was 5 minutes away. Instead of parking and joining the festivities we went to go see the Birthday Bottle. We drove for awhile down some twisty, hilly roads, trees all around us blocking our view for most of the way. We finally curved around one last turn and BAM right in front of us, the huge Brook's Catsup Bottle. Let me tell you, it really is big!

After we marveled at the bottle we drove back to the festival. We got there just in time to see the Hot Dog (smothered in Catsup) Eating Contest. This is the contest Peter wanted to enter, so he ran over to the booth to put his name in the drawing. Sadly, they had already chosen their 8 contestants. Peter was a bit disappointed, but we enjoyed watching anyways. They did two age groups: Kids (up to age 13) and Adults (14 and up). The kids were first, they were given two minutes to eat as many hot dogs as they could. There were two huge plates of hot dogs in front of them and Hooters Girls waiting with bottles of catsup to smother each hot dog before they ate them. These kids were very amusing to watch.

The reigning champion ended up winning for the second year in a row, eating 4 hot dogs in 2 minutes. YAY!! The adults were much more boring to watch. The guy that won drank water while eating his hot dogs, he completely cheated! We were a little bitter about that.

After the contest we sang happy birthday to the Catsup Bottle and got to eat free cupcakes, Yum! Then we walked around to see some of the different activities and gawk at the awesome cars in the car show.

We came across a booth where you take a Catsup taste test. See, Collinsville is where Brooks Catsup originated from. So, there were 4 containers with different brands of catsup and you had to taste each one and guess which one is the Brooks brand. Peter went first and guessed the Hunts brand. I went second, so I had a bit of an advantage, but I won!!

By this point we had done mostly all there was to do and we were getting pretty hot, sweaty, and tired. However, we had to make one more stop. Every year at this Festival Erika Nelson comes and brings her Traveling Art Museum. This museum is The Worlds Largest Collection of the Worlds Smallest Versions of the World's Largest Things. Basically, this woman travels around the world and visits all the Worlds Largest Things in her special truck where she actually documents her journeys. After she sees these things she goes back home and creates very small replicas of all the World's Largest Things that she has seen.

Peter and I checked off all the things in her museum that we have already seen and talked about the ways we could plan on seeing all the others. After we finished looking at the museum we headed back to the car. With one more look at the fun Catsup Festival we were on our way home feeling very satisfied with our fun day and unique experience.


  1. I'm lovin' that hair Kortney. Seriously.

  2. Thanks for stopping by the fest, guys! and thanks for a good review!!
    Mike Gassmann
    The Big Tomato