Come celebrate the 100th anniversary of the invention of Fluff
Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 (rain date: 9/24)
Union Square • Somerville, MA
What the Fluff?
Union Square • Somerville, MA
So, What’s the Fluff?
Join us for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Fluff, invented right here in Somerville’s Union Square in 1917 by Archibald Query. This madcap, fun-filled festival draws approximately 15,000 people and is cited as one of the reasons why Lonely Planet named Somerville in the top 10 “Best In The US” travel destinations for 2017.
The 12th annual “What the Fluff” Festival will feature musical performances, a cooking contest, Fluff-themed games, activities, antics and fun for every age, and Fluff treats of every sort.
This year’s theme of “FluffCentennial: Inspiring the Next Century of Union Square Invention” will offer lots of ways to invent all sorts of new fun and Fluff-inspired food, as well as the opportunity to highlight how invention is cropping up again, 100 years later, all over Union Square.
“What the Fluff?” A Tribute to Union Square Invention is presented by Union Square Main Streets as part of the Somerville Arts Council/ArtsUnion.
Cooking Contest Registration
A call for Fluff enthusiasts! Registration for the Cooking Contest is now open. Submit your best Fluff recipe and our celebrity judges will put your dish to the test! Deadline is Monday, September 18.
- Best Future Chef
- Most Retro Recipe
- Most Inventive Recipe
- Grand Prize: Centennial Winner
Cooking Contest Judges
Rachel Leah Blumenthal
Rachel Leah Blumenthal is a Somerville-based journalist and musician. She has been the editor of Eater Boston since 2013, chronicling the ins and outs of the Boston-area restaurant scene. Prior to writing about food, Rachel earned a bachelor's degree in neuroscience at the University of Rochester and a master's degree in science journalism at Boston University. Rachel has been active in the local music scene since moving to Somerville, performing with The Michael J. Epstein Memorial Library and others at events such as TEDxSomerville, the Fluff Festival, the Union Square Farmers Market, Artbeat, HONK!, and PorchFest. She also co-wrote a song about Fred, the Somerville Turkey. Find Rachel on Instagram (@blumie625), particularly if you like pizza and cats, or find her in real life; she's most likely eating somewhere in Union Square.
Senior Political Reporter, WBUR
Anthony Brooks brings more than 30 years of experience in public radio, working as a producer, editor, reporter and host for WBUR and NPR. Before becoming WBUR’s senior political reporter, Brooks was co-host of Radio Boston, WBUR’s local news and talk show. For many years, Brooks worked as a Boston-based reporter for NPR, covering regional issues across New England, including politics, the economy, education, criminal justice and urban affairs. His reports have been heard for many years on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Weekend Edition. Beyond NPR, Brooks was also a senior producer on the team that launched "The World" for Public Radio International. He was also a senior correspondent for InsideOut Documentaries at WBUR. His documentary, Testing DNA and The Death Penalty-InsideOut, won the 2002 Robert F. Kennedy Award for best radio feature. Over the years, Brooks has won numerous other broadcast awards.
In 2006 Brooks was awarded a Knight Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan, where he spent a year of sabbatical studies focusing on urban violence and wrongful convictions. Brooks grew up in Boston, Italy and Switzerland, but he says none of those places have anything over Somerville, where he currently lives.
Emmy-Award winning anchor, Lisa Hughes co-anchors the 5, 6 and 11pm newscasts at WBZ-TV with David Wade. She’s covered every major news story in Boston over the past 17 years.
She anchors WBZ’s exclusive race coverage of the Boston Marathon and, in 2014, had the privilege of being the only local journalist to interview President Obama before the race.
In addition to her work at WBZ, Lisa is on the Board of Directors of Big Sister Boston and First Literacy. She serves on a development board at Spaulding Rehab Hospital and takes part in events to support the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dorchester, Boston Children’s Hospital and Boston Ballet.
Lisa is a 7-year Pan Mass Challenge rider who calls the peanut butter and fluff sandwiches at the water stops the culinary highlight of an amazing weekend. She lives in Metro-West with her husband, Mike…their kids Riley & Dylan and two food obsessed Portuguese Water Dogs.
Chef/Owner/Pitmaster of The Smoke Shop
Andy Husbands is one of the most established Chefs, Pitmasters, and Cookbook Authors in New England. With over three decades of experience, Andy has owned and operated Tremont 647 and Sister Sorel in the South End for over 20 years and recently debuted one of the most anticipated openings in Boston with his passion project, the Smoke Shop in Cambridge. The Smoke Shop is a culmination of Andy’s early years as a Pitmaster under Chris Scheslinger at the East Coast Grill and his near 20 years on the competitive barbecue circuit with his team IQUE, an award-winning team he cofounded with Chris Hart. The Smoke Shop’s menu reflects a modern competition-style barbecue, or what Andy likes to call City Q. Andy has earned local and national acclaim receiving nods from countless publications, including USA Today, The Huffington Post, Zagat, The Boston Globe, Boston Magazine, Wine Spectator, and Star Chefs and recently released his fifth cookbook, Pitmaster: Recipes, Techniques, and Barbecue Wisdom with Chris Hart.
Thank You, Volunteers
It takes a small army to make the Fluff Festival a success! From setup to decor, to sticky-sweet fluff games, bake sales, and more, our volunteers are essential to a smooth festival experience for all. Thank you to our 100+ volunteers for 2017!
If you are interested in volunteering for this year’s Fluff Festival, either in the preparation phase or at the Festival, please fill out the Volunteer form.
See below for details about the 2017 Fluff Festival
Dept. of Shenanigans
|3:15pm||Blind Man's Fluff|
|4:00pm||XFluff on the Nose|
|4:45pm||Fluff Lick Off|
|5:00pm||Fluff Musical Chairs|
|5:30pm||Blind Man’s Fluff|
|6:00pm||Fluff Musical Chairs|
|6:30pm||Fluff Lick Off|
|6:45pm||Fluff Hair Do|
|3-7||Somerville High School Robotics Team and Artisans Asylum with 3Doodler, Black Cat Labs and Invention Land.|
|Activities offered include robotics, 3Doodler pen, vinyl cut designs, laser etching and more.|
- Midway Kids Area
Fluff bowling, Fluff ring toss, Fluff corn hole and Fluff constructions.
Play with a plethora of high quality, unique athletic games and equipment that promote gross motor development, physical activity and fun targeted for ages 2-6
- Roaming Railroad Train
|2017 Fluff Festival T-shirts (onesies, toddlers, youth & adults)|
|What the Fluff Baseball Caps|
|What the Fluff Tote Bags|
|Fluff University Vinyl Stickers|
We highly recommend alternative means of getting to Union Square including by bike, by bus or walking. We’re just a 25 minute walk from Lechmere, Porter, Harvard, Central or Sullivan Squares.
Red Line MBTA: Take Red Line to Harvard Square, then the #86 (Sullivan Square) bus to Union Square. Or take the Red Line to Davis Square, then the #87 (Lechmere) bus to Union Square.
Orange Line MBTA: Take the Orange Line to Sullivan Square, then the #86 (Allston) bus or the #91 (Central Square) bus to Union Square.
Green Line MBTA: Take the Green Line to Lechmere Station, then the #87 (Clarendon Hill) bus to Union Square.
86: Sullivan Station – Reservoir (Cleveland Circle) via Harvard/Johnston Gate
87: Arlington Center or Clarendon Hill – Davis Station or Lechmere Station via Somerville Ave.
88: Clarendon Hill – Lechmere Station via Highland Avenue
91: Sullivan Station – Central Sq., Camb. via Washington St.
Routes 86, 87 and 91 detoured around Union Square from 12:30 PM to 8:00 PM on Saturday, September 24.
If you do decide to drive, it’s recommended to park on the outskirts of Union Square.
Hubway is your public bikeshare. Grab a bike from one of over 180 stations throughout metro-Boston, and ride over to Union Square for the Festival. There are 5+ stations within walking distance, including one in Union Square itself. Find the Hubway ambassador at the Union Square bike station to save $20 on Hubway annual membership.