Thinking about going to the International Biscuit Festival in Knoxville? Whether you are local or have to travel across the country, you should find some of my notes helpful.
1. Go! Yes, it is worth the trip and there are so many delicious, creative biscuits to be devoured in a relatively short period of time. Read my previous posts of favorite biscuit, second favorites, and honorable mentions to see examples of the kinds of biscuits you might encounter.
2. Go early! Tickets for Biscuit Boulevard went on sale at 8:30 while the festival started at 9:00. We got there at 9. There were already long lines for some of the really popular booths. Although the festival officially goes to 3:00 pm, some booths were out of biscuits by 11:00.
3. Finish your coffee before you get there. You want to have your hands free because they will fill up quickly. You will be carrying around your ticket, plates with biscuits, and the bottle of water they give you when you buy the ticket. Better yet, bring a shoulder bag you can put the water into. You may have to manage a huge biscuit like this one!
4. Prepare for weather. It was raining when we left our hotel but that did not seem to diminish the crowd (I kind of hoped it might mean more biscuits for me!). See #3. Even more difficult to hold everything when you also have an umbrella.
5. Bring a friend. Eating biscuits together is a bonding experience. Also, the way it works is you purchase a ticket for $10 that allows you 5 biscuits. If you and your good friend share each of the biscuits, then you each get to try 10.
6. Stay close to Market Square if you are coming in from out of town. This area of Knoxville is lovely and everything you could want is within walking distance. Great restaurants. We stayed at the Crowne Plaza because it had a discounted rate for festival goers. Check the festival web site a few months ahead for info.
7. Don’t panic! You will get your fill of biscuits. I wish I had taken a little more time to think about which biscuits I wanted to try because I missed a few that looked really good. I was worried by the long lines at first and then realized they move quickly. We actually could not finish all the samples that we did get.
Do you know when next years festival is? I might have to go and check it out.
May 15-17, 2014. Thanks for asking – I’ve just put it on my calendar!