Things in Sacramento are going to get a little spicy this weekend when Sactown Wings swoops into town for its fourth annual Chicken Wing Festival on Sunday at 2 p.m. in Southside Park.
The inaugural edition of the festival drew over 1,200 people to Fremont Park. The second and third years saw double that attendance to over 3,000 people. This year, they hope to add another 1,000 folks to that number.
Local wings fans can look forward to chomping down on wings from various restaurants, including Adamo’s Kitchen, Blue Cue, BarWest, Chicago Fire, Flaming Grill Cafe, The Hotel Bar, Kupros Craft House, Logan’s Roadhouse, Uptown Pizza Kitchen & Wood Lake Tavern, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse, Fire Wings and Wing Guys.
Restaurants can apply to be involved with the festival, though local restaurants likely reap the biggest rewards.
“It’s not like a huge, a big enough moneymaker, you know it’s not like the State Fair or something where you’re just going to sell a bajillion wings at four times the normal rate,” said Laura Ball, sponsorship and events marketing manager for Xoso Sport & Social League.
Along with eating wings, participants who purchased advance VIP tickets can vote on which restaurants will reign supreme in three different categories: best overall wing, best specialty wing and best hot wing.
Chicago Fire – returning this year – has won the best hot wing award for the past two years. Fire Wings, who was a newcomer to the festival last year, took home the awards for the remaining two categories.
“You really got to bring your A game, because you never know what’s going to influence their votes,” Ball said.
The festivities aren’t limited to the wing-fueled competition for the kitchen chefs, however. There’s also a wing-eating content, where attendees can see who can mow through wings the fastest.
“This is a Sacramento-born and -grown festival, and it’s highlighting Sacramento businesses and the incredible things that our restaurants and chefs are doing here,” Ball said.
The festival is family-friendly, with free admission for children under age 5. Activities for the youngsters include face painting, a caricature artist, a balloon twister and inflatables in the KidZone.
SacTown Wings festival
When: Sunday, 2-6 p.m
Where: Southside Park, Sixth and T streets, Sacramento
General admission: $10 at the entrance, $15 advance; children under 5, free. No pets allowed.
Tickets and information: sactownwings.com