It's almost time for the 52nd annual Festival of the Arts. From July 12-15, downtown State College will transform back into the festival that features some of our favorite...
The best food fight in town: WingFest!
Ready your appetites, everybody. The Central PA WingFest competition is on its way!
Every Thursday beginning July 5 at the Tussey Mountain Amphitheater, wing chefs compete for eligibility to the WingFest Finals. Those who make the final cut have the chance to compete for the title "Wing King" on August 16.
For just $5, anyone ages 13 and up can enter the amphitheater for an opportunity to taste the evening’s competitors’ wings, and children 12 and under have free admission. Once inside, purchase food and drink tickets and begin taste testing!
The Road to the Finals
There are six rounds of competition before the WingFest Finals. The first food face-off of the summer takes place July 5, and the gate opens at 5:30 p.m. Several local favorites are competing for their chance to advance in this next-level food fight: Big Bite Wings, The Blonde Bistro, State College Spikes, Texas Roadhouse and 2016 Champion Wilderness Lodge.
Onlookers and competitors alike can also enjoy some live music. Miss Melanie & the Valley Rats will perform at 6 p.m., and The Dave Matthews Tribute Band will be on at 8 p.m.
On July 12, the next round brings four more wing masters to Tussey Mountain: JP Edwards, Mountain View Country Club, Revival Kitchen and Wegmans. Texas Whiskey Authority and the Country Legends Tribute Tour will provide the soundtrack for the evening.
The following rounds will continue to narrow down the competitors for the finals while attendees continue to enjoy the food, entertainment and atmosphere. Bands such as Refugee: Ultimate Tom Petty Tribute, Burn Unit, My Hero Zero, Hybrid Ice, Quarterstick and Bruce in the USA (Bruce Springsteen tribute) will also be performing, along with other bands that have yet to be determined.
During the August 16 Finals, Pure Cane Sugar and Velveeta will provide live entertainment while six finalists give their all in the effort to be the Tussey Mountain Wing King.
Although the competition is all about wings, the amphitheater offers a diverse selection of additional food, too. During each round of WingFest, attendees can dive into food and drinks from Doan’s Bones BBQ, Rosie’s Pierogies, The Weiner Wagon, Packer’s Concessions, Carl’s Crazy Corn and other vendors.
Those who need to leave the amphitheater for a bit need not worry; re-entry is allowed, so feel free to try other activities at Tussey Mountain such as Mini Golf, Skate Park, Go-Karts and Batting Cages.
For more information about each evening’s lineup, click here.
History of WingFest
This epic food fight is by no means new to Central PA. WingFest has taken place at Tussey Mountain for 20 years. Every year, WingFest includes up to 30 of the area’s restaurants and 14 bands.
The attendees’ influence over the outcome is one of the best parts of WingFest; everyone who pays to enter receives a vote ticket, allowing them to vote for their favorite restaurant in that round. People’s votes are tallied at 9:30 p.m., and the winner is announced by the evening’s end.
The entertainment is just as important to the atmosphere as the food; State College Magazine voted Tussey Mountain Wingfest as the “Best Place to See Live Music” in State College in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
2017 WingFest was packed with popular vendors including Rita’s Italian Ice, Rosie’s Pierogies, Packer’s Concessions, and World’s Fare Catering. The entertainment was just as stellar; bands such as Frackwater Jack, Hybrid Ice, Ted and the Hifi’s, Velveeta, Pure Cane Sugar, Spider Kelly and Jackie Brown & the Gill Street Band provided top-notch performances.
IF you want a taste of the best wings in town, check out some of the previous champions: Kelly’s Steak & Seafood (2017), Wilderness Lodge (2016), Duffy’s Tavern (2014 and 2015) and the Hublersburg Inn (2012 and 2013).
Share Your Experience
We want to know your thoughts on all things WingFest! Tag us in your posts on Facebook and Instagram. Check out happyvalley.com’s play page for a list of other fun things to do while you’re in the area for WingFest.
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