Pork Place at the Missouri State Fair celebrates 40 years


The Pork Place restaurant opened in 1979 at the Missouri State Fairgrounds in Sedalia (2019 photo courtesy of Missouri Pork Association)

SEDALIA, Mo.- A popular restaurant at the State Fair in west-central Missouri’s Sedalia is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

Missouri Pork Association Executive Vice President Don Nikodim tells Missourinet the Pork Place opened in 1979, under a small tent. It’s now in an air-conditioned building, with seating for a few hundred people.

“It’s a cool, clean place to come eat, we’ve got a super crew back here. Bob and Patty Wheeler have managed this thing for years for us, and they do a phenomenal job,” Nikodim says.

The Pork Place menu now includes pork chops, pork burgers, pulled pork, ribs and candy bacon. It also includes a quick service window for those wanting to grab a quick pork burger and drink, on the run.

“We think we’ve got the best food on the (state) fairgrounds, and we think we got the best prices to go with it, so enjoy,” says Nikodim.

He says the Pork Place connects pork producers with consumers, adding that the pork industry contributes $1 billion annually to the state’s economy. Governor Mike Parson says Missouri pork producers raise more than 3.4 million hogs in the state.

Governor Parson and state Department of Agriculture (MDA) Director Chris Chinn joined Mr. Nikodim at the Pork Place on Thursday, for a ceremony to mark the restaurant’s 40th anniversary. The celebration included a large cake.

The 2019 State Fair ends on Sunday.

Click here to listen to Brian Hauswirth’s full interview with Missouri Pork Association Executive Vice President Don Nikodim, which was recorded on August 15, 2019 at the Missouri State Fair in Sedalia:

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