A Kickstarter project to create a batch of potato salad closed this morning. Potato Salad was successfully funded at $55,492, or $55,482 more than its original goal of $10.
The creator, Zack Danger Brown of Columbus, Ohio, has promised to fulfill all of the Kickstarter's rewards and stretch goals (including making 10 times the original planned amount, photos of Brown making the potato salad, video proof of him saying the names of backers while making the potato salad, and even a potato salad trucker hat.)
However, the enormous success of the project left Brown with more than enough money to make all the potato salad (and options). So he's putting the funds toward a free "PotatoStock 2014" gathering in Columbus and, more seriously, making a significant contribution to a civic foundation with the goal of helping Columbus-area nonprofits end hunger and homelessness.
"These types of funds gain interest every year and grow over time," Brown wrote on Tuesday, "so, while our little Internet joke will one day be forgotten, the impact will be felt forever."
Brown said money from the Kickstarter also will go toward establishing a limited-liability, for-profit corporation whose goal "will be to spread humor and joy around the world.
"We will update all backers with the exact amount of money that is spent on both the for-profit and non-profit entities," Brown said. "Ultimately, our goal is to be as transparent as possible! "
PotatoStock 2014 is scheduled for Sept. 27, 2014 at The Columbus Commons and will run from noon to 8 p.m. Brown says he is working on signing up bands to perform at the show, which will be free and open to the public. Two bands already are confirmed, but he's looking for a headliner and a kid-friendly act.
The Potato Salad Kickstarter, apparently a satire of the explosion of crowd-funded projects (and the appeals to donate to them) was a certifiable viral success, coming at a slow point in the news cycle — the three-day July 4 holiday weekend. Numerous news organizations picked up the story, and contributions shot from a few thousand dollars to more than $20,000 in less than a week.