MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)--- You can buy a brat and help raise funds for local charities while meeting the Morning Show team on Friday, May 24.
It’s 18th annual “Take Your Brat to Work Day”. The event started in 2002. In 2018, 33,640 brats were sold during the three-hour event that kicks off Brat Fest. Since 1983, the World’s Largest Brat Fest has sold more than 3.8 million brats to help raise about $1.9 million to benefit 100 + local charities. The event brings the community together each Memorial Day weekend.
“It all started as a suggestion by NBC15 bringing up the question of “What if”, and we jumped on it. The first one I think was with just our grills, the line was huge, but we were able to keep pace. The second year I think we brought the Johnsonville big taste grill, that is when the event just exploded, each year we did it there at NBC 15 it got busier and busier until eventually just like the original Brat Fest event out growing Hilldale, we just out grew the NBC 15 studio parking lot and had to move over to Willow island. The same exact thing happened over there, each year we did it the bigger it got, with last year being our newest world record for “Take Your Brat to Work Day” which was 33,640 brats,” said Tim Metcalfe, Brat Fest organizer and Brat Man.
The Morning Show will be broadcasting Live from 6 a.m. – 9 a.m. from the event grounds at Willow Island next to the Alliant Energy Center.
You can avoid the long lines and delays by planning ahead. If you are planning to pick up a large order of 100 brats or more, please call ahead. Call Kathy Kratochwill at (608) 661-6345 at least one week in advance. Orders over 100 are unwrapped to preserve freshness. All brats are $3.
If you can’t make it to the island in the morning to pick them up, check out our “Take Your Brat to Work Day Delivery” option. CLICK HERE to view the delivery zones and fees.
The Friday morning event kicks off the 36th annual World’s Largest Brat Fest where more than 3,200 volunteers from the community will donate 16,495 hours of their time to grill and serve food, to facilitate recycling and composting, and to keep the grounds clean and safe for all attendees. In return, each volunteer earns $8 per hour which is donated back to the charity of their choice at the end of the event. More than that 100 local charities rely on Brat Fest to keep their programs running.
Metcalfe said they have added grills this year, started cooking earlier, and have added more hot storage and staff to make the lines go quicker this year.
Metcalfe said, “Today, we start cooking before the sun comes up. We have over 24 grills maned and ready to go. We can cook over 14,000 brats a hour with over 250 volunteers ready and set to wrap and deliver hot sizzling Johnsonville brats to the hundreds of cars that show up for ‘Take Your Brat To Work Day’. It’s an amazing event. Where else in America can you set up 24 grills and have 1000’s of people show up in their cars, all taking brats to their fellow workers all in the name of charity.”
CLICK HERE for more information about “Take Your Brat to Work Day” and Brat Fest. See you on Friday, May 24.