The Lesser-Known November Holiday

For at least one day this year, think outside the locally sourced menu


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Thanksgiving may be the highest profile holiday this month, but it’s not the only one: November 16, for instance, is National Fast Food Day. In addition to the usual suspects, the Valley now hosts a few less familiar fast food outlets — the sight of which may be a cause for celebration, or even transport you to memories of low-budget vacations spent in the way-back of your parents’ station wagon.

Sonic is a Southern drive-in now found in New Windsor, Wappingers Falls, and Middletown that is famous for roller skating carhops, chili-cheese tots, half-price milkshakes after 8 p.m., and fascinating beverages of all hues and permutations, some with solids suspended in them. They also offer booze-free frozen cocktails, such as a margarita — lest a passenger find any tequila and Cointreau stowed under the dash. 

Another Southern staple, Hardee’s, has also popped up in Middletown and around the Valley, boasting a wide scope of breakfast biscuits, ranging from blueberry to country-fried steak, and featuring one called “Monster” (which includes, but is not limited to, three breakfast-friendly formats of pork). Also on offer: burgers in a stunning and specific array of weights. ⅔ lb Monster Thickburger, anyone?

Not to be outdone, Perkins (not quite fast food, but we couldn’t resist), found in Wappingers Falls and Middletown, will sell you bacon strips dipped in pancake batter, griddled, and then served with syrup. Journalism dictates that we also must report on the “Tremendous 12,” a conglomeration of more meat and pancakes and eggs than the average soul can count, accompanied by a potato thing of your choice. 

Finally, this sit down dinner may not be as fast as the golden arches either, but if you’re in the market for a buffet repeatedly described as “legendary,” Golden Corral, now open in Middletown and coming to Poughkeepsie, is it. The endless pot roast and the chocolate fountain may just help get you in prime eating condition for Turkey Day. (There are also rumors of chicken-fried bacon, but these have not, and perhaps should not, be confirmed.)

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