How Spuddy Buddy and the Big Idaho Potato charmed Seattle

twins.jpgIn Idaho, a not-insignificant share of the citizenry is ambivalent about potatoes. Not baked with butter and sour cream, but as their state’s icon. The skeptics don’t like the “Famous Potatoes” license plate, don’t like being represented by a brown vegetable, don’t like the joking from out-of-state relatives. But outside of Idaho? No ambivalence. When the Big Idaho Potato truck rolls into Roosters café in Pendleton, Oregon, the wait staff gathers at the window. At a rest area on a bluff above Yakima, Washington, a couple following the potato races over to quiz the potato’s handlers. When a fire alarm empties the Hilton Hotel in Bellevue, Washington, at 3:15 a.m., half-awake guests in pajamas stumble over for selfies with the 28-foot-long potato. And for the hundreds of thousands of people who line the route of the Seattle Seafair Torchlight Parade, it’s love at first sight. “People all over America love it,” says Jessica Coulthard. She should know. She’s in her second year as a Tater Twin, traveling the nation with the Big Idaho Potato to store openings, community events and parades like Seafair. Read more