Thursday, May 22, 2008
Shhh . . . the World's Largest Brat Fest is sleeping
But not for long. As I drove by on Olin Avenue on the way home from work Thursday evening, the World's Largest Brat Fest was all bedded down on Willow Island at the Alliant Energy Center and resting up for Friday morning's opening at 11:00 a.m., when the Sparetime Bluegrass Band will hit the Quench Gum Stage and become the first to perform of some forty local musicians booked for the event, which lasts through memorial Day. During the four-day event, people will once again try to break the 2004 record consumption of 37,886 pounds of Johnsonville Brats -- enough to stretch just under 18 miles, laid end to end.
It really did look as if it was sleeping this evening -- complete with an apparent Rapid Eye Movement (REM) cycle. Like a sleeper moving his eyes in REM sleep, Brat Fest moved its Ferris Wheel. There was no one on it. Silently it turned clockwise, then counterclockwise and then clockwise again, just like eyes flicking back and forth in a sleeper's dream state. As I drew closer, I saw someone at the controls, apparently testing the machinery. Then he walked away, presumably to get a good night's sleep, and -- probably for the last time in a few days -- the World's Largest Brat Fest was totally silent. It didn't even snore.