What is Baconfest Chicago?

Baconfest Chicago is a festival of bacon. There will be so many awesome bacon things that you will not know what hit you.

When is Baconfest Chicago?

Tentatively scheduled for end of October 2009.

Is this an April Fools Joke?

No.

Where is Baconfest Chicago?

The Baconfest Triumvirate is still in the site evaluation phase.

Who is behind Baconfest?

Baconfest Chicago is the brainchild of the Baconfest Triumvirate: Michael Griggs, Andre Pluess and Seth Zurer. See our Bios for more detail.

I saw the Bios: all they talk about is your first bacon memories. Do you guys have any qualifications to run Baconfest aside from an unsavory obsession with America’s favorite cured pork product?

Well. Yes. We have a deep network of contacts in the Chicago food world, and the passion to make Baconfest a reality.

Why Baconfest?

Please read our Manifesto. Also, seriously? You’re asking why about something called Baconfest? I think you know the answer to that question.

I don’t live in Chicago. Is there a Baconfest in my city?

There may be. Baconfest Chicago 2009 is not the only Baconfest in the world. Since we started our planning, we’ve found an unofficial network of baconfests that have existed for decades. We’re not even the first Baconfest in Chicago – last year, the people at Risque apparently threw a Baconfest. There is a Bacon Fest in Des Moines, Atlanta and Smithfield, UT. A related category of event, called BaconCamp, has been held in San Francisco and future baconcamps are planned for Vancouver, Seattle and Miami. Scratch the surface and you’ll see that Baconfest is part of a global bacon community. Join up!

Um, I’m Jewish.

Excellent question. We think our Facebook friend Paul Libman had some deep insight into Baconfest when he posted this Haiku to our group:
Bacon seduces
all that is Jewish in me.
Mom rolls in her grave.

The Midrash explains the relationship between Baconfest and Judaism when it discusses the role of the Apikoros – or heretic. Derived from the Greek epicurus (as in Epicurean!), in Jewish culture the Apikoros is anyone who has broken away from the Rabbinate; or more generally, someone who has abandoned the specific adherence to the strict rules that govern observant Jewish life in favor of a “rational”, critical approach to life. Since medieval times, the Apikoros has been valued and feared for the critical distance and skepticism about dogma that he/she brings to study of Jewish identity.

We at Baconfest are skeptical about sumptuary laws, whether they are the rules of Kashrut, the practices of Halal, the municipal ban on Foie gras or the modern habits of the ovo-lacto-vegetarian. We respect the deliciousness that can come from imposing narrow restrictions on one’s dietary habits, but choose to apply only those restrictions that serve our vision for a happy and fulfilled life. Does that make us hedonists? Yes. I think it does.

That said, perhaps you will enjoy the tee-shirts or photography contest.

How much will it cost?

Our vision is that Baconfest will be affordable. You can expect to pay a small fee for entrance, and then to pay to purchase food, beverage, souvenirs and bacon. We are actively looking for sponsors to help us achieve our vision of an affordable Baconfest.

How can I help Baconfest?

You can:
- Spread the word. Blog about us. Tweet about us. Put us in your status updates. Make our logo the background for your desktop. Talk about us to the national food press. Write articles about us in your magazine / newspaper / newsletter.
- Send us your suggestions – we’re looking for chefs, bacon-makers and creative bacon entrepreneurs to include in Baconfest.
- Do you have specific knowledge or experience in catering, large scale event marketing, event logistics, or the like? Drop us a line at seth[at]baconfestchicago.com.