ISU hosts student-run Bacon Expo


Kevin Larson/Iowa State Daily

Brynna Sankey from Scratch Cupcakery serves maple bacon and chocolate bourbon bacon at Bacon Expo 2014. Bacon Expo took place on Nov. 8 at the Hansen Agricultural Student Learning Center.

Anthony Weiland

Members of this year’s ISU Bacon Expo can pig out in the all-you-can-eat bacon event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday in the Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center.

Attendees will also be educated on where their food comes from and how it gets from the “gate to their plate,” said Megan Andersen, sophomore in agricultural business and executive member and recruitment co-chair for the Bacon Expo.

The Bacon Expo is in its third year, this is the first year it is completely student organized with the assistance of a faculty adviser. Andersen said the Bacon Expo was originally assembled by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences as a teaching opportunity for the public.

Andersen said the Bacon Expo organizers are focused on serving the public, specifically on agriculture education with a fun take on a more serious issue. Student board members intend for an audience ranging from farmers to those not familiar with farming or agriculture whatsoever, including students, community members and families.

Attendees can expect a variety of entertainment, including all-you-can-eat bacon, specialty bacon items, live 20-pound piglets, a bacon eating contest, coloring contest with prizes every hour, a corn pool for kids and most importantly, the education.

All bacon items, except apparel, are free with the price of admission. With 14 different bacon vendors, a person’s bacon craving can’t help but find its fix. Specialty bacon items this year include maple bacon cupcakes courtesy of Scratch Cupcakery, beef bacon and bacon candy.

This is Scratch’s third year attending the Bacon Expo.

“We will be bringing 1,000 mini maple bacon cupcakes to Bacon Expo,” said Bre Stone, kitchen manager at Scratch Cupcakes in Cedar Falls. “Bacon Expo is a good thing for the community to attend to try different things and see different businesses.”

Even though vendors play a key role in the event, students take great pride in their organization of the event. 

“Bacon Expo is the only student-organized bacon event in the nation,” Andersen said.

Members have been planning the Bacon Expo for the entire year. About 300 pounds of bacon will be served. They start cooking it a week early, but it is only half cooked and is finished right before the event, so it has maximized crispiness and flavor.

For fun bacon facts and further details about the planning and execution of Bacon Expo, follow Iowa State Bacon Expo on Facebook and @ISUBaconExpo on Twitter.

Tickets can be purchased through or by visiting Bacon Expo’s website at They cost $12 for adults, $10 for ISU students with a student ID and $8 for children under 10. The event is for children 5 and under. Tickets prices will rise at the gate.