Boing Boing 

Turkey testicle eat-off founder is pretty relaxed about nearby town copying his festival

TTF-Food-Turkey_Testicles

vWObko

There are plenty of turkey testicles for everyone.

That's the message of peace given to the world by the owner of Parkside Pub, a Chicago area bar that's been holding its Turkey Testicle Festival for 32 years. It now faces competition from a similar bird-balls-eating festival in East Dundee. Same time, same date, same delicacy: turkey testicles.

From an article in the Daily Herald, a local paper covering the Chicago suburbs:

Citing a need for a family-oriented fall event, East Dundee leaders announced this week they'll be holding their first Turkey Testicle Festival, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Nov. 25, the day before Thanksgiving.

That's the same name and time frame for a 33-year tradition in not-so-distant Huntley.

J.R. Westberg, whose Parkside Pub has been hosting a Turkey Testicle Festival for 32 years, took the competition in stride. "Our only thought to this was that there was no originality placed on their event," he said, noting that Parkside's fest often brings in more than 4,000 attendees.

"We've perfected the execution over the years," Westberg said. "Thirty-three years of tradition is probably not going away for us."

But East Dundee downtown businessman Cliff Surges, who is organizing the fledgling event, said the village is not trying to upstage or compete with the Huntley event; there are plenty of turkey testicles to go around.

"Huntley has their market," he said. "We're looking at a different demographic coming in. There's more than enough to go around for everybody."

"Citing a need for a family-oriented fall event," they say.

"East Dundee jumping on the Turkey Testicle Festival bandwagon" [Daily Herald, Illinois]

turkey_2012

Biosensors inspired by turkeys

Turkeywaddd

UC Berkeley researchers took inspiration from a turkey's color-changing wattle to design a biosensor that detects toxins or pathogens. Turkey wattles change between blue and red as the blood vessels between the collagen fibers swell or contract. The researchers used benign viruses to self-assemble into collagen fiber-like structures that change colors as they expand and contract when exposed to chemicals like hexane, methanol, and even TNT.

“In our lab, we study how light is generated and changes in nature, and then we use what we learn to engineer novel devices,” said professor Seung-Wuk Lee who co-led the research.

"Turkeys inspire smartphone-capable early warning system for toxins"

How turkeys fly

Turkeys do fly. But they're built more for running, with powerful legs. Those legs, though, come in handy when the birds do take to the air. Unlike other large birds that need a relatively long runway to launch themselves skyward, turkeys can basically just jump up and take off — sort of the helicopter to other birds' 747.