62 years in business
Who they are: Donald Skillman Jr. is this generation’s Peanut Man, the third in a line going back to his grandfather. He takes pride in maintaining the nostalgic peanut stand vibe for customers who are bringing along their kids and grandkids, by using the same trailer his dad manufactured in the 1980s, the cast-iron roaster drums from the 1920s that his grandfather used, and a cash register from the 1940s. He says, “Everything in the trailer is old except for me and the peanuts. I want to honor what my dad had in mind when he built the trailer, which was to use the old stuff he remembered from when he was a kid.” Although it is only a part-time job for Skillman —he is a contractor and house-flipper full time — he still gets around with the Peanut Factory. For Skillman, like most of the others with whom we spoke, the Dutchess County Fair stands out as the main event each summer.
What he sells: Fresh roasted in-shell peanuts
Where he travels from: Roosevelt, NJ