Last year was the New Orleans Fried Chicken Festival’s inaugural year, which brought out more than 40,000 people to Lafayette Square. Because the fried southern specialty brought out such huge crowds, the festival has moved to Woldenberg Park on the riverfront and will last for two full days on September 23 & 24, 2017.
Woldenberg Park has nearly five times more space than Lafayette Square. With the bigger venue, the festival organizers are expecting 100,00 attendees over the span of two days.
The Fried Chicken Festival presented by Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers will feature 35 New Orleans food vendors and has opened up the festival to other restaurants across the United States along with music and activities for kids.
Cleveland Spears III, whose Spears Group founded and runs the festival, said, "We're coveting some of the well-known fried chicken vendors in Los Angles, New York and Houston. We truly believe that this can be a national food festival."
This year, chef Jeff Henderson, star of the syndicated TV show "Flip My Food," will be the headliner for the cooking demo stage.
The vendors at the festival also compete to win top honors from a panel of judges. Last year, Fiorella's Cafe won the prize for best-fried chicken and Jazz City Cafe took the honor for best use of fried chicken in a dish.