If you haven't heard about it yet, brace yourself for the Idaho Potato Commission's (IPC) "biggest" news in its 75-year history.
In celebration of its Diamond Anniversary, the IPC has built a larger-than-life version of the iconic Idaho potato postcard. Weighing in at six tons (the equivalent of 32,346 medium-sized Idaho potatoes), The Great Big Idaho Potato Truck will embark on a cross-country tour this spring and summer to help raise funds and awareness for Meals on Wheels, a non-profit organization that provides more than one million meals each day to homebound seniors.
The Truck will get an official send-off on April Fool's Day in Boise, Idaho, before heading to Chicago to participate in the National Restaurant Show, the largest gathering of foodservice professionals in the world. After the truck departs the Windy City, it will visit millions of Idaho potato fans in cities large and small throughout the country.
Just how big is the Truck?
The Great Big Idaho Potato measures 11.5-feet tall, 28-feet long and 12-feet wide and is welded onto a 48-foot long flatbed trailer.
The Great Big Idaho Potato would take more than 10,000 years to grow.
The Great Big Idaho Potato is 1,102 times heavier than the largest potato ever grown, which weighed 11 pounds.
The Great Big Idaho Potato would take two years and nine months to bake.
Pass the gravy! The Great Big Idaho Potato would make 30,325 servings of mashed potatoes.
For those who prefer ketchup, it could easily make more than 1.5 million average-sized french fries!
The Truck made its national debut at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise last December when ESPN prominently featured it several times during the Game. Since then, the Truck has made several local appearances in Idaho and at every venue, the most frequently asked question is "Is it real?" We'll never tell!
To find out when the Truck will be in a city near you, please visit www.bigidahopotato.com. The website provides in-depth information about the Truck, the IPC's partnership with Meals on Wheels and is updated regularly with tales and photos from the road.
I would be remiss in not recognizing the extremely talented creators of the Truck, Chris Schofield and Sharolyn Spruce of Weiser, Idaho. With the help of a few specialized contractors, they spent an entire year designing and building this incredible vehicle. The Kenworth Sales Company and Western Trailer, both based in Boise, Idaho, also aided with the construction.
I'd like to extend a sincere thank you to everyone who has worked hard to bring this unique idea and vision to life.