EARTH DAY: THE IDAHO POTATO COMMISSION RECYCLES 6-TON POTATO INTO THE BIG IDAHO® POTATO HOTEL
Big Idaho® Potato Truck Kicks Off 2019 National Tour
Eagle, Idaho, April 22, 2019 – How do you dispose of a 6-ton spud made of steel, plaster and concrete? You don’t. You recycle it and turn it into the Big Idaho® Potato Hotel, the only potato hotel in the world! The 28-foot long, 12-foot wide and 11.5-foot tall potato is firmly planted in an expansive field in South Boise with breathtaking views of the Owyhee Mountains. Today the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) announced the opening of this unique retreat.
The massive potato was created in 2012 in celebration of the IPC’s 75th anniversary. Bolted to a flatbed trailer the giant spud traveled across the country for seven years. Built for a one-year tour, the sturdy spud held out as long as possible before it returned to Idaho to retire. Kristie Wolfe, a former member of the Big Idaho® Potato Truck Tour team and tiny house builder extraordinaire, knew instinctively how to transform the head-turning tater into a lasting fixture that folks can continue to enjoy.
“When Kristie presented her vision for the potato, the IPC unanimously agreed to donate it to her. Based on the success of her other tiny houses we had no doubt the Big Idaho®Potato Hotel could eventually become one of the biggest attractions in Idaho, further promoting the state’s most important agricultural commodity,” explained Frank Muir, President & CEO, IPC. “It’s only fitting that we launch the 2019 Big Idaho® Potato Truck Tour, featuring our second generation spud, at the grand opening of the Big Idaho®Potato Hotel on Earth Day. Maybe 2.0, our nickname for the new spud, will retire here too someday.”
Here are a Few Facts about the Eco-Friendly Hotel…
- Energy Efficient – The potato’s walls are made of 10-inch thick green expanding foam for optimal heating and cooling efficiencies.
- Air Conditioning – An 8-inch x 60-inch underground pipe acts as a natural air conditioner and fan pumping cool air into the potato even during hot summer months.
- Water – The sink is located above the toilet to redirect the fresh water that normally goes into the tank to the sink, saving both water and space.
- Conveniently Located – Just 20 miles to downtown Boise, guests of the Big Idaho®Potato Hotel can enjoy the sights and sounds of one of the fastest growing cities in America.
And, in case you’re wondering…the bathroom is located in a recycled silo just a few steps from the potato. The spa-like loo features a giant whirlpool, a fireplace, luxurious amenities and a glass skylight for night-time star-gazing.
For more information and/or reservations visit Airbnb.
The Big Idaho® Potato Truck
The Tater Team, the trio that travels with the Big Idaho® Potato Truck, couldn’t wait for the official launch event. The Big Idaho® Potato Truck has already traveled to the East Coast and back to attend two of the country’s largest St. Patrick’s Day parades in Atlanta, GA and Hot Springs, AR. This year the Truck will travel approximately 25,000 miles and be heralded as the main attraction at many events including the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C., Reno’s 100th Anniversary Parade, and the NASCAR Poconos Raceway. It may even make its first international trip crossing the Canadian border!
When folks first see the Truck, the most frequently asked question is still…Is it real? We’ll never tell, but if it is, it would…
- Take over 7,000 years to grow!
- Weigh 802 times more than the largest potato ever grown, which clocked in at 11 pounds!
- Make 20,217 servings of mashed potatoes!
- Make more than 1 million average-sized French fries!
And in case you’re wondering, the giant tater weighs 4 tons, which is approximately the weight of 21,562 medium-sized Idaho® potatoes.
The Tater Team
The Tater Team is made up of three people who love to travel – especially in a giant spud! Kaylee and Jessica, aka the #TaterTwins, are Idaho natives and best friends. They are celebrating their third year as Tater Team members. Melissa is our steadfast (or spudfast) driver in her debut year with the Truck.
Where’s the Truck Going Next?
There are numerous ways for folks to follow the 2019 Big Idaho® Potato Truck Tour and plenty of opportunities to see it in person.
- BigIdahoPotato.com The Truck’s official website, including a calendar of all the Truck’s appearances.
- Potatotracker.com Provides a real-time feed of where to find the oversized spud at any given time.
- Social media channels will continue to provide spud lovers with direct interaction with the Tater Team and the latest news on the tour:
- Facebook: Big Idaho Potato Tour
- Instagram: @bigidahopotato
- Twitter: #bigidahopotato
About the Idaho Potato Commission
Established in 1937, the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) is a state agency that is responsible for promoting and protecting the famous “Grown in Idaho®” seal, a federally registered trademark that assures consumers they are purchasing genuine, top-quality Idaho® potatoes. Idaho’s growing season of warm days and cool nights, ample mountain-fed irrigation and rich volcanic soil, give Idaho® potatoes their unique texture, taste and dependable performance. These ideal growing conditions are what differentiate Idaho® potatoes from potatoes grown in other states. For more information, visit www.idahopotato.com.