Tribune File Photo
A crowd enjoys freshly made food from concession stands at a past Madera District Fair. This year will include a variety of vendors to suit visitor tastes.
Food from the concession stands is plentiful at this year’s Madera District Fair. The aroma of carnival cuisine cooked fresh daily is as much a part of the fair as the livestock and the rides.
Professional concession vendors and local service clubs will spend the week cooking and feeding the crowds as they wind they way through the fair.
At several different locations you can get Mexican food, including that made by the Pan American Club. The Pan Am booth is also one of those allowed to sell beer and wine. Indian tacos are a favorite meal. At the Maddy’s Moos cart enjoy deep fried or rainbow grilled cheese sandwich along with a variety of unique dairy delicacies.
At the 20-30 Club booth its famous tri-tip sandwiches and dinners served with Italian green beans, chips, soft drinks, beer and wine coolers is a popular hangout for baby boomers and adults of all ages.
Madera Evening Lion’s Club operates the food booth at the livestock arena. These guys and gals open for business on Wednesday feeding the FFA and 4 H Club members and their families. They start early in the morning and go until late in the evening.
As with all the service clubs, their booths are staffed by volunteers funding the clubs many service projects that benefit the community.
Fair food has evolved through the years. While you will still find old favorites like the customary corn dog, cotton candy and caramel apples, healthier fare such as fresh fruit, smoothies and lemonade are available as well. Several places advertise cappuccinos and espresso, when not long ago the best you could hope for was a cup of coffee.
Changing tastes call for the vendors to change and adapt as well. A big red double-decked bus is selling English faire, offering an assortment of sandwiches, Philly cheese steak and lemonade. The snow-cone of a bye-gone era have been replaced by Hawaiian shaved iced, another indication of the changing of tastes and methods of serving. You will find fresh, hot cinnamon rolls, corn on the cob and French bread pizza, along with hamburgers, fries and Polish or Italian sausage sandwiches. Booths of Chinese food others sell ice cream and sundaes. Giant pretzels with a variety of toppings turn the treat into a dessert or a salty snack.
The booth that looks like a log cabin sells Kettle Korn, a sweet popcorn made from an old fashioned German recipe. The popular Pennsylvania Dutch funnel cakes also known as elephant ears are served plain, with powdered sugar or fruit topping. Chickie’s Tasty Treats sells fresh macaroons and a variety of cupcakes.
While there is nothing to eat at the cigar booth next to the 20-30 Club booth, many feel no meals is complete without a cigar to finish it off. The cigar booth has a large selection to choose from.