I had so much fun this past weekend. I was invited to be a part of the Eastern States Exposition, or as it is more affectionately known, The Big E! To call this venue “big” is the understatement of the century. It is the largest state fair in the northeast, boasting an attendance of 72,126 on Sunday alone, and the party lasts for 17 days!
We arrived to sunny skies and cool temperatures, ready to rock. After a brief “catch up’ with my comrade in crime for the day, Chef Jack, and Event Coordinator Howard Cowdrick. Wayne McCary, President of The Big E! came down to the beautiful set kitchen they had prepared for my visit for a personal hello.
We got to work fairly quickly to prep as much aof the demo as was possible. This makes it much easier for me to interact with the audeience, answer questions, and generally enjoy my visit. We planned on making Chilaquiles and what I (or Puerto Ricans in general), call “salad”: Lettuce, Tomato and Avocado Salad with an Anchovy-Garlic Dressing.
I never expected such a warm, and generous responce up in Springfield, Massachusetts. The turn out was huuuuge, and everyone was so generous. Of course, everyone wanted to know “what’s up with the show?”, and were happy to hear that we are very close to resolution (keep your fingers crossed!).
We served the Chilaquiles and the salad and then got ready to sign books and meet and greet (my favorite part of the demo!).
After the signing, Miggy and I decided to take a walk and see the grounds. We were in now way prepared for the immensity of what The Big E! really was. They even had their very own Mardi Gras Parade, complete with floats and everything. Howard told be the same people who make the floats in New Orleans for their Mardi Gras parade, make these floats, too! People really got into the spirit of things, throwing Mardi Gras beadds and everything.
It all went by all too quickly, and at last it was time to say goodbye, but not before thanking the incredible staff and volunteers at The Big E!
When I left the fairgrounds, the rides were all lit up, the smell of cotton candy and corn dogs was thick, and somewhere in the background, I could hear a salsa band playing. Never let it be said that New England doesn’t know how to rock a fair!