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Easton serving up 2 ways to celebrate bacon, with the usual festival on hold for 2020

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What would have been Easton’s 9th annual PA Bacon Fest is not happening in 2020, due to the coronavirus.

But organizers on Friday announced two alternative ways to enjoy some bacon-y treats while supporting Easton restaurants and the group that looks to the annual festival as its biggest fundraiser.

“In the past we’ve welcomed large crowds. We can’t do that this year,” Jared Mast, executive director of the Greater Easton Development Partnership that organizes PA Bacon Fest, said in a news release. “But we are determined to support our partners to the extent possible and will offer two options for a limited number of guests.”

Option 1 is The Bacon Experience, a smaller, ticketed event featuring live music and six food vendors “offering their bacon best” on Nov. 7-8 in an open-air tent at the city’s Hugh Moore Park, the GEDP announced.

Option 2 is the first-ever PA Bacon Fest Restaurant Week scheduled Nov. 2-8, featuring bacon specials and special menus at more than a dozen participating Easton area restaurants. Customers will be able to dine in or choose curbside pickup or delivery.

“Not everyone is ready for in-person experiences, and we understand that,” said Marcy McKinney, GEDP’s manager of special events and promotions. “We are offering two different ways where you can eat bacon and support Easton.”

The GEDP says to look for more details on restaurant week in coming days, including a list of participating locations available at pabaconfest.com.

For The Bacon Experience, tickets are $20 and capped at 200 available per seating at 10 a.m., noon or 2 p.m. each day. Tickets will reserve a private table for 90 minutes that can accommodate up to six people in one group. They can be purchased at pabaconfest.com/bacon-experience.

Guests can also choose a Bacon and Brew tasting for $40, which includes the reserved seating along with samples of six beers from a local brewery and six flavors of bacon from Easton Farmers’ Market vendor and Bacon Fest co-founder Breakaway Farms.

Hugh Moore Park will be closed to the public during the event, and parking is free.

The Bacon Experience will be held rain or shine.

Easton serving up 2 ways to celebrate bacon, with the usual festival on hold for 2020

Masks will be required of all vendors and guests at The Bacon Experience, out of respect for the health and safety of others, organizers said. Masks must be worn properly when in line purchasing food or merchandise, or moving around the facility. Guests may remove their masks while they are seated at their private tables. Tables will be placed a minimum of 6 feet apart from each other.

Hand sanitizer stations will be at the entrance of the open-air tent, and guests will be asked to wash hands before entering the facility. Hand sanitizer will also be placed at dining tables and vendor stands, and there will be two restroom trailers with running water that will be maintained and cleaned regularly throughout the event.

PA Bacon Fest has grown since its start in 2012 into a regional attraction that draws tens of thousands of people to Easton.

Along with supporting vendors and Easton businesses, the festival is also Greater Easton Development Partnership’s biggest fundraiser. The nonprofit oversees the Easton Farmers’ Market, Easton Main Street Initiative, Easton Community Gardens, Easton Ambassadors, West Ward Community Initiative, Easton Compost Program, and events such as Live at the Falls, Easton Out Loud, Peace Candle and Spring into Easton.

In past years, volunteers at PA Bacon Fest have asked for donations for GEDP. This year supporters are encouraged to donate at pabaconfest.com.

“PA Bacon Fest is an event that showcases Easton and its energy and fun-loving spirit,” Mast stated. “But it’s also an event that raises significant funds for our organization, supporting GEDP’s programs that run the other 363 days of the year.”

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Kurt Bresswein may be reached at [email protected].

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