MITCHELL — TikTok’s Corn Kid, Tariq, visited the World’s Only Corn Palace over the weekend for a local corn tasting and inauguration as a South Dakota “corn-bassador.”
The 7-year-old and his family were invited by the South Dakota Department of Tourism and the Mitchell Convention and Visitors Bureau to visit and tour the Corn Palace all the way from Brooklyn, New York.
They were met with warm welcomes by locals and Corn Palace officials, who prepared fresh corn on the cob (with or without butter).
Corn Palace Director Doug Greenway gave Tariq and his family a tour of the building and also spoke at the event, presenting Tariq with a statue of Cornelius — the mascot for the Mitchell Kernels — as he highlighted a few of the more notable accomplishments of the Corn Palace.
“Over 130 years, millions of travelers have come to see what this palace of corn is all about, and now you, too, know all about the World’s Only Corn Palace,” Greenway said in his speech. “We certainly appreciate you coming to see us and know you’ll enjoy Mitchell.”
Greenway also spoke on behalf of the city and the mayor, Bob Everson, who had prepared a proclamation declaring Sept. 3 as “Tariq ‘Corn Kid’ Day” in the city of Mitchell.
From Everson’s proclamation, Greenway read, “Tariq, the ‘Corn Kid’ from New York state, is as passionate about corn as we are about our Corn Palace. … His videos on social media have gone viral, showing his love, knowledge and excitement for corn, ‘a big lump with knobs.’”
Katlyn Svednsen, global media and public relations director of the state’s tourism department, spoke on behalf of Gov. Kristi Noem, who wrote a special proclamation as well, which declared Tariq an official “corn-bassador” of the state of South Dakota.
“Thanks for all of you to being here,” Tariq said later at the event. “And one more thing – cheers to corn!”
Tariq went viral on Tiktok and Instagram after appearing on Recess Therapy, an on-the-street style interview show. Tariq quickly became famous for his interview, where he told the host, “ever since I was told that corn was real, it tasted good.”
“I can’t imagine a more beautiful thing,” Tariq said at the time.
Though Tariq has become a social media sensation at only 7, his mother said his summer in the spotlight will soon come to an end.
“He’s just having fun,” she said, “but next week school starts and he’ll be back to being a normal kid soon.”
'Cheers to corn!' Tiktok's Corn Kid named 'corn-bassador' at Mitchell's Corn Palace on Saturday – Mitchell Republic