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Texas State Fair Fried Food Is Not An Age-Old Tradition

Photo: Flickr user literalbarrage

Texas State Fair fried food seems to be all anyone talks about when the month-long celebration of all things Lone Star comes up. But the sentiment often seems to run along the lines of, "Oh, those Texans! They are such gluttons! What else can you expect?" As if "fry something" is on every Texan's to-do list from the moment she or he wakes up in the morning. (Obviously natives know that it's second, behind "Change opinion on Tony Romo.") Today on Pegasus News, however, Teresa Gubbins has a pretty awesome piece on the history of fried food at the fair, and surprise: the fry-frenzy only goes back six years, to the advent of the Big Tex Choice Awards for fair food:

This six-year journey to become the "Fried Food Capital of Texas" -- trademarked, no less -- was not unplanned, and it started with Fried Twinkies, says fair spokeswoman Sue Gooding. "From 1942, the corny dog ruled at the fair," she says. "But then fried Twinkies came in and gained fame. After the 2004 Fair, fair president Errol McKoy brought a group of us together and said, 'We’re getting a lot of buzz about fried Twinkies and Oreos and candy bars. What can we do to get even more interest in food?'"
What they did: start up a competition to increase buzz, and the Fried Coke of 2006 was the break-out moment in fried publicity. Read the entirety of Gubbins' story to get the details on judging and the growing media frenzy.

· How the State Fair of Texas’ fried food thing got to be so big [PegasusNews]
· All State Fair Coverage on Eater Dallas [PegasusNews]

The State Fair of Texas

3921 Martin Luther King Junior Boulevard Dallas, Texas 75210