Ode to the Lutheran Baked Potato

This may seem like an odd post, but there is an equaly odd trend I’ve noticed on social media lately.

With Treasure Mountain Festival coming up this week, there is a lot for folks to look forward. Crafts, visiting, the parade, the fort burning – there are just so many things to take in, where do you even begin to discuss it?

In the run-up to this year’s festival, I’ve noticed tons of chatter on Facebook and Twitter specifically for one thing: the Lutheran baked potato.

I’ve seen mentions from people, specifically former residents of the county scattered to the wind, all making the same intention known. They’re coming to TMF for a baked potato.

I think part of it is the deep nostalgia we feel towards the festival, which ultimately runs up against the wall of inevitable change. Of all the transitions the festival has made over the years, the potato has stayed the same. It takes us back as we move forward.

In that spirit, I give you a poem specifically for this occasion.

Ode to the Lutheran Baked Potato
In the town of Franklin,
On the third Week in September.
You’ll find a festival,
With food to always remember.

There is pork barbecue,
A stand serving a fine crab cake.
But nothing can compare,
To one that takes hours to bake.

The lowly potato,
So plain and inconspicuous.
Yet, stands out from the crowd,
As, by far, the most delicious.

Gone are the hamburgers,
The Methodist grillers are through.
Their stand is now long gone,
Presbyterian hotdogs too.

One of the last church stands,
Sticks to a game plan tried and true.
Undeterred by changes,
Is that of Martin Luther’s crew.

Get it with some butter,
Some homemade chili, if you please
Pepper it green with chives,
Make orange with liquid cheese

Remember the sour cream,
Amazing with just a dollop
Any way you want it,
Just flush it down with some pop.

Every year we have it,
It has become so iconic.
Can’t be duplicated,
And we think that seems ironic.

So what is the secret?
Was it from Lutherans of yore?
Back to the beginning?
Did it get nailed to someone’s door?

Whatever the reason,
To that stand, I suggest you march.
You will never regret,
Filling up on five dollars of starch.


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  1. Vicki Hammer

    Mike, this is awesome and I wondered if it would be ok to print this and put it up on our potato booth? Thanks

  2. Pam Pritt

    I. Love. This. Also good in Pocahontas for Roadkill Cook-Off. Guaranteed to have never touched a tire!

  3. Angie Hedrick

    This is what we are all looking so forward to as well. I hope they have enough to last through Sunday evenings festivities!!! I don’t know why everyone stops selling so soon. These would sell right up until the last minute and they could make so much more money!!!

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