Whether your love it or hate it, the olive burger is synonymous with the Mitten. A staple on menus at restaurants across Michigan, the beloved olive burger is finally getting its due with a festival dedicated entirely to the unique food creation.

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Origins of the Olive Burger

If you're tracing the roots of the olive burger you'll most likely end up in Flint, MI at Kewpee Hotel Hamburgs. According to Wikipedia, Kewpee Burgers is, "the second oldest chain of hamburger fast-food restaurants."

The Flint Kewpee location was the first to top its burgers with olives but even despite breaking away from the chain and changing its name to Halo Burger, the Flint store continued to serve its popular burger. To this day the Kewpee location in Lansing claims the olive burger is still the most popular burger on their menu.

I had no idea the olive burger was uniquely Michigan until I moved out of state for seven years and could find no such item on menus across the Midwest, in places like Nebraska and Missouri. You better believe I made sure to grab my favorite olive burger in West Michigan, Corky's Drive-In, every time I visited my hometown of Allegan.

Lauren G for TSM
Lauren G for TSM

Olive Burger Festival

To celebrate and honor this Pure Michigan food, local food-lovers group Lansing Foodies have taken it upon themselves to fund the first-ever Olive Burger Festival. The Facebook foodie group was recently chosen to take part in a special Facebook Community Accelerator Program which, according to WILX, "...helps community builders advance their leadership skills and utilize Facebook tools to deepen their community’s impact.”

The group says they will use their newfound skills from the program to bring the inaugural Olive Burger Festival to fruition in the summer of 2023-- and I for one plan to be there!

Lansing Area Restaurants That Serve the Best Olive Burgers

The olive burger is a Lansing staple. There's just something about that combination of green olives and mayo atop a burger that makes Lansing residents salivate. Check out the list below to find out which restaurants are serving up this famous burger.

Gallery Credit: Kristen Matthews

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