If you were looking for food at the on October 16, you might have seen vendors for local favorites such as , Ghar-E-Kabob and —even a funnel cake stand. But you would not have seen the .
"We would have been happy to participate if asked,” said William Moore, who owns the IHOP at the corner of University Boulevard and Grandview Avenue. “I assume they’re trying to promote the independent mom-and-pops.”
The Wheaton Urban District coordinated the booths at Sunday’s festival, collected the $125 fee from food vendors and sent out event notices to businesses, said Sidney Cooper, of the Wheaton Urban District.
“We were very selective for the food vendors,” Cooper said. “We handpicked them” for regional and ethnic diversity, although they added the funnel cake stand at the last minute. More than half the vendors were from Wheaton, but some were from other parts of Montgomery County.
Moore said that as a local restaurant, IHOP should have been welcome.
“I’m probably as local as you can get since I live just down the street,” Moore said. "I sometimes think they see the IHOP and they don't think of me as a locally owned chain."
“I don’t think anybody thinks that,” Cooper said. “Obviously, the IHOP is a locally owned restaurant.”
Moore's customers seem to agree.
"IHOP to me is a national brand, but it's local because it's some place you rely upon," said Marty Katz of Silver Spring. Katz is an IHOP customer, but he said he's never met Moore.
Cooper pointed out that Moore is a member of the Wheaton Urban District Advisory Committee and knew about planning for the World of Montgomery Festival.
“He knew that if he wanted to participate, he could have,” Cooper said.