The biggest event of the year at Clarion is the Autumn Leaf Festival or ALF. It is a week-long event where there are parties, parades, a pep rally, a homecoming dance, and best of all, FOOD! 

There are so many food trucks and stands that I didn't know where to begin. I still haven't been to all of the places yet, but here are my favorite and least favorite foods (so far) on a one to ten scale.

Main Dishes

Samm Hillegass

Everyone suggested to get the bread bowl at ALF. There was a huge line when we got there. My friends, Sami Jo and Catie, both got the marinara bowls.

The bowl itself was garlic bread. The inside was penne pasta, marinara sauce, Parmesan cheese, and a meatball. This bread bowl could have also been Alfredo. It was one of the best things I have ever had in my life. All of the food blended together so well. I was in complete shock because it was so good, especially for a food truck. Rating: 9.5/10

Samm Hillegass

This was another surprising food. They had huge strombolis and I decided to get the meatball stromboli instead of the traditional ham.

It consisted of meatballs (obviously), mozzarella cheese, and a bread dough outer layer. It came with marinara sauce on the side to dip into. When I first bit into this, I thought it was really good. The more I ate it, the more I noticed how undercooked the dough was. I figured that I could just swallow it, but it made me feel sick later on. The flavor was good. I'd just suggest to cook it longer. Rating: 5/10

Side Dishes

Samm Hillegass

This was the first food I had at ALF and it was a mac and cheese waffle. I saw the ad for it and wanted to try something weird so I went for it.

It was macaroni noodles put into a waffle iron. Then, cheddar cheese was put on top. There is nothing fancy about this other than you can tell that this is fair food. I loved this waffle-type food. It was good, but it was a lot. As I kept eating, it became really dry. There seems to be a lot of cheese, but there is a lot of dry starch. It wasn't an equal balance. It was also a little burnt. Rating: 7/10

Samm Hillegass

I can't remember the exact name for this, but I remember that this stand had tator tots and hot dogs. They weren't normal though. They had a bunch of different combinations. My decision was between the buffalo tots and the barbecue tots.

These tots had barbecue sauce, crisp fried onions, and cheddar cheese. For how basic the ingredients were, it looked super cute and fancy. Well, it was as fancy as fair food can be. This might have been my favorite ALF food. It was so simple, but so, so good. I loved how well the odd flavors went together. I also love tator tots and the new ingredients made them so much better. Rating: 10/10


Samm Hillegass

I really wanted a traditional fair food, but instead I went with the Amish doughnut for my first night at ALF. There were a few stands selling these. If you know rural Pennsylvania, we have a lot of Amish homemade food around us.

I decided to get the classic glazed because I'm basic and like a traditional taste. The only difference between a regular doughnut and this one was that this one was the size of my head. I'm not joking! THIS THING WAS HUGE!

By the time I ate it, it was cold. They come out fresh, but I waited till I got to my dorm to eat it. Either way, it was super flavorful. I was just sad it wasn't as good as I was expecting it to be. It tasted generic like the ones you buy from Giant Eagle or Walmart. They weren't special. They were just good. Rating: 6.5/10

Samm Hillegass

You know how everyone loves their funnel cake or deep fried Oreos. Well, I wanted to get one of those until I noticed they were also selling deep fried Snickers.

I've had deep fried Twix before which is not good, but I thought this had to be delicious. This was just a Snickers bar deep fried and then covered in powdered sugar. The picture may not look appetizing to the average person, but it was A-MAZ-ING!

The caramel and nougat melted making it taste so much better. The peanuts made it taste weird though because it was the only salty thing amongst so much sweetness. Overall, it was as delectable as I thought and more. Rating: 8/10

cake, vegetable
Erin Livingston

There were tons more foods there and I did try more, but these were just the ones I had the strongest opinions about. I can't wait for ALF to come back next year. Hopefully, we'll see some new faces to try these foods for themselves!