Tator Tot time

Ontario Fire Chief Terry Leighton, left, pulls tater tots out of a fryer, while Ontario City Recorder Tori Barnett watches at the Malheur County Fair. The two were volunteering at the booth, which was promoting the Tater Tot Festival in 2020.

ONTARIO — The event is still about 10 months away, but the pieces of the Tater Tot festival planned for next fall are starting to come together, and organizers recently received a financial boost from the company behind the potato treat.

The festival is slated from Sept, 18, 19 and 20 and activities will be centered in the downtown area, according to Charlotte Fugate, with Revitalize Ontario, which is organizing the event.

She said the organization had received a $50,000 grant from Kraft-Heinz, the company behind the iconic potato nugget, the successor to Ore-Ida Foods in Ontario, where the food product was originally developed. With the donation, Kraft-Heinz is being designated the platinum donor.

Revitalize Ontario plans to raise at least another $25,000 to support the festival, said Fugate.

While there are several activities being planned for event, Tater Tots, which is a registered trade mark of the company, will be the star of the show.

Fugate said events will include a Tater Tot cook-off with contestant entering their best recipes, which they will have opportunity to development and prepare in the first part of summer for an initial competition in July.

Ten finalists will be selected to be in the main competition at the festival, during which the winner will be picked, she said.

In addition there will be vendors along South Oregon Street.

“Every vendor will have a Tater Tot dish,” Fugate said, adding that a Tater Tot eating contest is being planned.

Organizers are also hoping to bring in a carnival, which will be set up east of Oregon Street, near the railroad tracks, as well as a 5K run and activities for children in Moore Park, she said.

Load comments