Inspiration Post #11: Testicle Festival

Today I’m going to talk about an event that inspired me, even though I’ve never actually attended.

In my short story “Tyler Wang Has a Ball” poor urban Tyler gets roped into attending a testicle festival. I am delighted to say such events actually exist. I was inspired by the one that takes place every year in Oakdale, California, which also claims to be the Cowboy Capital.

The TF has been happening for over 30 years. There really are a lot of cattle ranches in the area, and the festival serves up the springtime byproduct of turning male calves into steers. Yep. Like Tyler, I’m not exactly sure whether a vegetarian should partake. After all, the cattle aren’t killed, right?

It’s a popular event despite the hefty ticket cost. I encourage you to visit their website ( wherein you can watch a video and listen to a song, and also find a picture of the 2011 slogan contest winner (“30 years and still hangin’!”).

Incidentally, in the story the event takes place in a ballroom. Oakdale’s festival does not. But the neighboring town of Turlock does have a ballroom, and well, what better place to hold a testicle festival?

Have any of you ever eaten a rocky mountain oyster? What are they like? And what do you think of the vegetarian question?

Next week: Praesidium

2 thoughts on “Inspiration Post #11: Testicle Festival”

  1. I did eat ’em, actually, when I was seven. My father had an adventurous soul and a wonky sense of humor. When we lived in Colorado he took us to a ranch to watch them harvest and prepare the local delicacy. The testicles were fried, as I recall, and tasted okay but not great. The rancher’s wife gave me cocktail sauce, which helped. And vegetarians… should pass on the testicles. After all, the calf was hurt in the process. 🙁

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