With ongoing concerns about the novel coronavirus COVID-19, many wondered if Somerville's beloved Fluff Festival would be canceled this year, but the events went on this past weekend - with a few changes, of course.
The festival was held virtually on Saturday September 12 with all-day activities beginning at 11 a.m. This year’s theme was Fluff at First Sight because a "spoonful of Somerville helps life’s absurdities go down!"
Fluff fans were able to log on for live music, games, the annual Fluff hair-do showcase, and Fluff trivia.
Various Union Square restaurants also invited revelers to join them in person for weekend specials like Fluffy apple pie empanadas at Bow Market’s Buenas and Fluffernutter doughnuts at Union Square Donuts.
Marshmallow Fluff was invented in 1917 by a French-Canadian confectioner named Archibald Query. Query relocated to Franklin, MA at the age of seven and eventually settled in Somerville where he made and sold his fluff door to door.
For the past 15 years, the Somerville Fluff Festival has served as a celebration of Union Square's "stickiest invention" and "proud tradition of innovation."
It normally draws approximately 20,000 people to Somerville each year and is one of the reasons Lonely Planet named the city in their top 10 “Best In The US” travel destinations.
On the subject of this year's virtual celebration, the Fluff Fest website reads:
"In a world reinventing itself, Fluff Fest 2020 unites us – albeit online – through the one thing we can all believe in: the sweet, sticky, tasty, magical power of Fluff!"
"For the love of Fluff, boast your worldwide Fluff pride, support independently-owned by scoring your Fluff stuff online and stuffing yourself with fluffy foods, and flock with fellow friends-in-Fluff through the first-ever, virtual Fluff Festival."
The annual Fluff Fest is put on by Union Square Main Streets, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to strengthen the dynamic neighborhood of business in partnership with the Somerville Arts Council.