Pistachio Party to Highlight this Friday’s Farmers Market

Miss California 2018 MacKenzie Freed poses with Mr. Pistachio in front of the American Pistachio Growers booth during the Pistachio Party in Old Town Clovis. APG was handing out pistachio pesto pasta and pistachio brittle and merengue samples to market goers. KELSEY LESTER-PERRY/CLOVIS ROUNDUP

Some people are quite familiar with the Pistachio Party, which will take place this upcoming Friday, for the uniqueness it brings to Old Town Clovis, but very few are aware of how critical this event is for the Central Valley.

“The heart of the valley is also the heart of pistachio country,” said Wesley Wilson, a communications member from American Pistachio Growers (APG). “It’s a great opportunity for us to highlight to the community that the healthy snacks you love are grown right here.”

“Most of the big chunk of the food we eat comes right from the valley. So the farmers market is such a great way for people to see that not just with pistachios, but with local produce with almonds with just about anything and everything you can think of,” Wilson said.

APG estimates that by the end of the event, close to 800 pounds of pistachios will have been distributed to vendors, patrons and the Institute of Technology culinary academy – which is known for coming up with some nutty creations.

In the past, it has handed out pistachio-inspired treats such as pistachio pesto pasta, pistachio brittle, pistachio meringue and of course the ever-popular sample bags of straight-up pistachios. Wilson said that vendors will receive 10 pounds of pistachios to create their dishes.

Some activities at the Pistachio Party will include 60 general vendors with farmers selling produce and jewelers sharing their craft. In addition, there will be bounce houses, pony rides and a food truck alley. The event will take place from 5:30 to 9 p.m. September 30 at the Friday Night Farmers Market.

Frank Dalena, the owner of the Bring the Juice Podcast will be doing a live recording of the podcast with Fresno State alumnus and professional boxer, Marc Castro.

“More people are attending this year than even last year,” Heather Frantzich, executive director of Business Organization of Old Town (B.O.O.T.) said.

“Our attendance has been really good this season. And you know, we just appreciate local support shopping local. And we’re ecstatic to be able to have the Pistachio Party back again this year.”

A couple of weeks ago, it was decided to cancel the farmer’s market because of extreme heat. According to Frantzich, not only was it to keep patrons safe but also vendors and their products. That should not be an issue this year, as it will be a high of 94 degrees on Friday night.

Jesús Cano spent five years covering high school sports in the Bay Area, which included bylines in the Mercury News, East Bay Times and Brentwood Press. Jesús transferred to Fresno State in 2020 to pursue his education in journalism and hopes one day be a beat reporter covering a professional sports team. He is originally from Pittsburg (No H), California, a suburb community in the Bay Area.