Not your father’s school carnival food

Chicken Teriyaki #1, School Carnival - Austin, Texas

Chicken Teriyaki #1, School Carnival – Austin, Texas

Every fall, sometime near Halloween, my son’s elementary school has their fund-raising carnival. The school and the PTA put on a fun show and they raise a lot of money. This year, I was surprised by the change in menu. Sure they had the usual pizza and burgers but how does chicken teriyaki sound? Most kids still seem to like the traditional faire but the parents gravitated towards this new entrée — the colorful bowls sold quickly. The teriyaki bowls were courtesy of a restaurant called Roll On Sushi Diner. Each serving had a different look but it had the same ingredients, arranged differently. I just loved the color and the evening light was perfect so I just had to snap a few photographs. The Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4 that I’ve been talking about recently did a great job.

It occurred to me that this is one of the great things about America. As the new wave of immigrants become settled and go main stream, so does their food. Until recently, sushi and teriyaki were exotic and unheard of. Now Japanese food is mainstream enough that, at least in Austin, they make it to the school carnival menu. I remember reading in Lee Iacocca’s autobiography that he was teased at school for bring a new fangled ethic food call pizza for lunch. Times sure do change.

Chicken Teriyaki #2, School Carnival - Austin, Texas

Chicken Teriyaki #2, School Carnival – Austin, Texas


Please make sure to click on the photographs to see a larger image and hover over the photos to see the exposure details.

5 thoughts on “Not your father’s school carnival food

  1. I live in Toronto..at least a mix of 118 nations, beliefs and different ethic groups.Even the roadside trucks are way different than “teriyaki”. i enjoy Mexican from living in California), Greek, Italian, French Indian and of course Chinese..
    Love the shot, looks delicious.
    Even the single language of States was gone, while in CA. Official notices were in Spanish, Vietnamese and English. Lived in Newport Beach, working in Laguna Beach.Later worked in the whole Southern California, doing an Automotive Advertising service..plus my Pro photography.

    1. Jason, thanks for your visit and comment. I went to Toronto several times back 20 years ago and even then it was an amazing meting pot. More so than the U.S., I thought. Austin also has a very healthy food truck culture with much more exotic food. What amazed me that in the typical limited food environment of a school fund raiser, this new option popped up.

  2. I could go for that right now even though it’s 0830 am 😉 My own favorite fair food is the Corndog. It’s the only time I eat them. I tried the Deep Fried Twinkie once – it was interesting although I don’t know if I would ever have it again.

    1. I’ve not been brave enough to eat a deep fried Twinkie. The food here at the school carnival is a lot more limited than at a state fair. It is just a small event that runs for 5 hours once a year to raise money for the school.

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