The World’s Largest Catsup Bottle Festival

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illinois_collinsville_catsup-bottleThe World’s Largest Catsup Bottle has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 2002.

Don’t you think it’s time you took a look?

The perfect opportunity is July 13, 2014, during the catsup bottle’s festival, birthday and car show.

The catsup bottle is (as you may have guessed) a water tower. It stands tall next to Route 159 at Railroad Avenue, Collinsville, Illinois. The official address is 800 South Morrison Avenue, which just south of downtown. This unique 170-foot-tall “bottle” was built in 1949 by the W.E. Caldwell Company for the G.S. Suppiger catsup bottling plant — bottlers of Brooks old original rich & tangy catsup.

The festival takes place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the grounds of American Legion Post 365, 1022 Vandalia Street, Collinsville.

A full day of fun features ketchup-tasting, hot dog (smothered in ketchup) eating contest, the Princess Tomato and Sir Catsup Pageant, food vendors, craft booths, pony rides, and live music. Old-fashioned birthday party games for kids of all ages will include musical chairs, “please pass the ketchup”, a hula-hoop competition, water balloon toss, and our own version of spin the (ketchup) bottle. There’s a classic and custom car, truck and motorcycle show, live music and more.

Is it catsup or ketchup — there really is no difference. It really just boils down to a spelling preference of the company producing the product. There used to be as many “catsup” products as there were “ketchup.” But the overwhelming success of Heinz and the fact that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration spells it “ketchup” makes the “K” spelling far more common. In fact, a few years ago, even the current owners of the Brooks label changed the name of their product from “catsup” to “ketchup.”

(Photo courtesy of World’s Largest Catsup Bottle)