"LOWVILLE A bidding war at the Lewis County Fairs Cheese Auction left state Sen. Joseph A. Griffo, R-Rome, victorious and holding a 20-pound block of cheese.
The Big Cheese, as it is known, has been featured every year in the auctions 18-year existence.
This particular chunk went for a whopping $1,800 to Mr. Griffo, who later explained, Its on behalf of Matt Doheny, Dan King, Ken Blankenbush and myself.
In addition to those Republicans, auction organizers reported Michael F. Young; County Clerk Douglas P. Hanno; Legislator Richard C. Lucas, R-Barnes Corners; Lowville Town Supervisor Randall A. Schell and Lewis County Public Defenders were also part of the purchase.
Kraft Foods traditionally matches the Big Cheese bid and this year rounded the total up, donating $2,000.
The auction benefits the dairy building at the fairgrounds, said Laura McCallops, Kraft distribution facilitator. Funds also will help promote dairy with milk and milk machines in local schools, Ms. McCallops said.
Kraft donated 200 pounds of cheese for the auction, while the Lowville Producers Cheese Store donated an additionalamount of Muenster, Swiss, Gouda and 8-year-old cheddar.
The auction raised around $11,000.