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Thousands turn out in Manhattan as annual Potato Festival takes over downtown

More than 4,000 people were expected to attend
Posted: 2:59 PM, Aug 19, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-19 16:59:31-04
Thousands turn out in Manhattan as annual Potato Festival takes over downtown
Thousands turn out in Manhattan as annual Potato Festival takes over downtown

It’s a summer tradition in the Little Apple.

Thousands attended the Manhattan Potato Festival which started at 6 a.m. with the volunteer Fireman’s Breakfast, followed by a 5K run.

The festival’s car show featured more than 100 vintage vehicles this year.

"Any time that you can close a street and have people walk up and down it they enjoy it," said Paul Jones, President of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce.

"Kids enjoy it, people enjoy to be able to get out have some different fun food and to be able to see friends, family, people you don’t see very often, be able to just come out and just mingle together in the community."

Festival goers lined up along Main Street for the parade that started at 11 a.m., and there were numerous raffle drawings at the event and even a “dress the spud" contest.

The Manhattan Potato Festival has been going on for more than thirty years and is entirely run by volunteers and vendors.

Vendors shared artisan crafts, tasty treats and of course, the Manhattan Senior Center’s famous baked potatoes.

"A lot of the Potato Fest is often here because of the sponsors that we have and the help that we get from the community," said Jones.

"We have so many volunteers that help... It’s all volunteer," said Betsy Mancuso, Manhattan Chamber of Commerce board member.

"So that’s how it’s brought together, a lot of people doing everything, moving barricades and then manning the tables."

Evening events included a community dance and live music.