Idaho 'ambassador' is no small potato

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A tuber of tremendous proportions is coming to Walla Walla next week.

In celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Idaho Potato Commission, a stupendous spud will be making its way into the community on a flatbed trailer. Walla Walla is a stop on a seven-month, cross-country journey to celebrate the commission and raise funds for Meals on Wheels.

For two hours Tuesday the potato will be on display at Super 1 Foods, 710 N. Ninth Ave. The celebration starts at 1 p.m.

In an announcement about the traveling potato, Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter said the truck serves as a “traveling ambassador for the great state of Idaho, the number one producer of potatoes in the country.”

The “Great Big Idaho Potato Truck” features a 28-foot-long, 12-foot-wide and 11 1/2-foot tall specially “cultivated” potato.

The Great Big Idaho Potato Truck was created and built by Chris Schofield and Sharolyn Spruce of Weiser, Idaho.

With help from specialized contractors they spent a year designing and building the vehicle, the announcement explained. Boise-based Kenworth Sales Company and Western Trailer assisted.

A few details about the giant potato:

  • A spud of this size would take more than 10,000 years to grow.

  • The traveling tuber is 1,102 times heavier than the largest potato ever grown at 11 pounds.

  • It would take two years and nine months to bake.

  • Mashed it could make 30,325 servings, and more than 1.4 million average-sized fries.

Those who want to see can check out the truck and have photos taken with the potato.

Visitors are encouraged to make a $7 donation to the Meals on Wheels Association of America. That price is the cost of preparing and serving one meal. In honor of its diamond anniversary the Idaho Potato Commission has donated $100,000 to Meals on Wheels Association of America, which represents more than 5,000 Meals on Wheels programs across the country that prepare and deliver more than 1 million meals a day to homebound seniors.

For more details follow the Famous Idaho Potato Tour on Facebook or visit idahopotato.com.

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