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Catsup Bottle Festival moving uptown

By Devese “Dee” Ursery

The annual Catsup Bottle Festival in Collinsville will be back in full swing this summer and in a new location.

The Catsup Bottle Festival is a yearly celebration of the iconic 170-feet water tower that stands alongside Route 159. The first ever Catsup Bottle Festival took place in 1999, to commemorate the landmark’s 50th anniversary.

The Festival is picking right back up where it left off five years ago, except in a new location. This year the event will be held on Saturday, July 8, at around 11 a.m. at old Herald’s Square, in Uptown Collinsville. The past two festivals were held at Woodland Park.

Mike “The Big Tomato” Gassman said in a press release that the Catsup Bottle Preservation Group was allowed a chance to team up with the people from Old Herald’s. He said the area would create a new community gathering space in the Uptown business district.

Old Herald’s Brewery and Distillery is a family-friendly restaurant that promotes its own in-house craft beers and distilled alcohol that is produced on-site. The Brewery opened its doors in 2019 in the newly renovated Collinsville Herald Newspaper Building. Herald Square opened 2022 and is an event and concert space right next door to the Brewery.

Derik Reiser, owner of Old Herald Brewery and Herald Square said that this will generate interest and attract a lot of people walking through the Uptown area.

According to the release the World’s Largest Catsup Bottle was rescued from destruction by the Catsup Bottle Preservation Group. In 1995

The roadside attraction was built in 1949, for the Brooks Catsup factory  and is a piece of Route 66 history. It is also listed on the National register of Historic Places. 

The event will highlight new activities like the Mascot Madness Dance-off, which features professional and collegiate sports mascots. 

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