Aw, Shucks! another Sweet Corn Fiesta has come and gone.
-review of the event at the South Florida Fairgrounds’ Yesteryear Village (West Palm Beach).
In its 17th year of fame, the Sweet Corn Fiesta descended upon Palm Beach County, the sweet corn capital of the world. Thousands were there eagerly awaiting the National Corn Eating Championship. Last year’s champion Yasir Salem of New York who ate 47 ears of corn in 12 minutes was there ready to defend his title and crown. This year along with the title was a prize of $6,100. By three o’clock, all the seats were filled, all the contestants were ready and all the corn was ready to be dished out and flung everywhere. The next twelve minutes was a blur of epic chomping tenacity as the crowd screamed and cheered watching a barrage of kernels scattering about. The fever pitch reached it’s apex as the crowd witnessed a new World Record of eating over 64 pieces of corn in under 12 minutes and the dethroning of a giant. The new International Sweet Corn Eating Champion Carmen Cincotti of New Jersey with some of his victory still clinging to his beard raised an arm claiming his moment and his crown.
Yes, the National Corn Eating Contest was the highlight, but the Sweet Corn Festival had so much more for everyone. There were other fun corn eating contests as well, some corn shucking contests with stalks ripping from kids and adults alike and even a hilarious Corny Hat Contest. Outside of the contests were a bunch of rides and slides and for a measly $5.00 you got a wristband to go on them for the entire day! Also, unlimited was my favorite beverage of choice Mama Jugs Ice Tea, The Arnold Palmer version Pucker Up was phenomenal. There were tons of different food vendors all around the Yesteryear Village, but none better than the boiling pot of corn on the cob. Hung over the fire these ears of corn were shucked, dipped in butter and blasted with some salt and pepper. They were so hot and delicious, yet I couldn’t have eaten 64 of them! Under the tent for $5.00 you could get an ear of corn, a hot dog and a drink. We chose some soft, warm and delectable fried corn fritters.
While we ate and braved some rainfall, the music played on with the Krystal River Band and the Sierra Band played later in the day as well. Kids danced all around, rode on ponies, got their faces painted and made ginormous bubbles, however they also loved the petting zoo as they got up close with ducks, baby chickens, a cow, goats, pigs, horses and more.
From top to bottom or should I say ‘ear’ to foot the Sweet Corn Festival was a major success and not just for the new International Sweet Corn Eating Champion Carmen Cincotti, but a success for all of us and I’m sure next year will be even bigger and butter, er better!