[Not Actually] My Town Monday

The Lovebirds at home

We took EB back to the university on Friday, stopped by The Lovebirds‘ apartment for a visit (we brought lunch with us) and then my wonderful husband agreed to hang around at a city park until the start of The National Lentil Festival.

How big is it?

stirring the lentil chili

That is a 650-gallon pot of lentil chili, and back when they made a pot half that size, they ran out of free samples in 40 minutes! The chili is stirred with river paddles [clean, of course] and ladled into small bowls.

SnakeMaster, H-J, and SuperDad taste their lentil chili

Lentil ice cream

We paid $2.50 for frozen treats, but everything else we enjoyed was free: samples of lentil chili, lentil chips, even a large cup of lemonade!  We like FREE.


Humorous-Juniorous and SuperDad went back for a second cup of lentil chili to go with their lemonades. SnakeMaster was just glad the sample bowls weren’t any bigger.

Lentil chips in 4 different flavors — all gluten free!

There were plenty of freebies given out. Some were intended to be eaten immediately, some to take home (we have several sample bags of different kinds of lentils), and some were just fun swag like chip clips for all those lentil chips they hope we will be purchasing, lanyards and keychains, and even glow-in-the-dark sticks.

Some of the swag we brought home

SnakeMaster sifts through a tray of lentils for a piece of candy

A few fun facts about Lentils:

  • *Whitman County, WA, grew 98% of the lentils produced in the entire United States back in 1990! Twenty-two years later, this county now grows about a quarter of the nation’s lentils, not because they grow less, but because other areas increased their production of this fabulous food!
  • *Lentils are mentioned in the Bible (Genesis 25:34) when Esau was tricked into selling his birthright for a pottage of these delicious legumes.
  • *The ancient Egyptians thought that the lentil enlightened the minds of children, making them more cheerful and studious. I might agree with this, to the dismay of my youngest son.

Mascot Tase T. Lentil

We also had a brief Butch sighting

Friday night festivities included the free bowls of lentil chili and an evening block party (which we did not stay long enough to enjoy). Had we been around on Saturday, we might have cheered at the parade, the 5K run, or the 3-on-3 basketball tournament, enjoyed a lentil pancake breakfast, or even found a place to watch the 100K bike ride.

Entertainment in Cougar Plaza

2012 National Lentil Festival official poster

The rolling fields of wheat (and lentils, beans, and peas!) in the Palouse have been described as “a photographer’s dream.” The cliché is indeed a tired phrase, but I managed this shot while SuperDad drove home Saturday evening: