By Vince Meehan
The Taste of North Park returns to Uptown on Saturday, October 9th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. as a benefit event for North Park Main Street. The popular self-guided restaurant tour is back for foodies and culinary lovers from all over San Diego. As well as offering food tastes from over 30 of North Park’s iconic eateries, the event will feature street musicians and live art along the walking route.
“This event is all about supporting our local businesses and the community,” Angela Landsberg, Executive Director of North Park Main Street (NPMS), said. “The funds raised from ticket sales go directly back in to community improvements like graffiti abatement, sidewalk pressure washing and other beautification projects.”
The Taste of North Park is consistently one of Uptown’s more popular events, bringing in people from all over San Diego. Foodies can stroll from place to place, sampling bites from eateries like a culinary Trick-or-Treat event. This year, participating restaurants include Encontro, One Door North and new places like Verbena and Tabu Shabu.
Ronnie Schwandt is the Executive Chef at Verbena and is looking forward to participating in his first Taste of North Park event.
“I am excited to be a first-time participant in the Taste of North Park and to give North Park a little bite of what Verbena is all about,” Schwandt said. “As a brand new restaurant, we are excited to meet everyone in community. I am also equally excited to be a part of an event that will get people out and about and support the local businesses and restaurants. We need all the support we can get!”
Of course, North Park is also famous for its battery of local craft breweries and many will be represented at the Taste of North Park, serving four-ounce tasters as well as distinctive nonalcoholic beverages. Virginia Morrison is a co-founder and CEO of North Park’s Second Chance Beer Company, and is excited to help support the community.
“Taste of North Park is an example of what makes the North Park community such a vibrant and compelling place to have a small business. The North Park Main Street Association does an amazing job of connecting residents to our business community,” Morrison said.
Mike Hess, Original 40 Brewing Company, North Park Beer Co., and Second Chance will all be on hand to refresh the thirsty participants of the tasting. Many local musicians and street artists will perform for the guests along the route, and parking will be available at North Park Parking for a $5 all day parking rate.
Landsberg says that many of the non-food boutique shops in the neighborhood will also feature specials in conjunction with the event. “The purchases made by participants while sipping and shopping at the event are a great way to support local businesses. If each of us spent $100 a year more on local businesses instead of chain stores, it would put an extra three million dollars a year into our economy. And not only that, but it would create thousands more jobs as well.”
As with past years, NPMS is reliant on an army of proud volunteers who help promote their local businesses. Anyone interested in helping out as beer pour beverage servers are encouraged to go to northparkmainstreet.org to sign up as a volunteer. All helpers must be 21 or older, and will receive a Taste of North Park souvenir t-shirt and an invite to a special volunteer appreciation party. Tickets for the event are available online or the morning of the event at St Luke’s Episcopal Church at 3725 30th Street
For more information, go to bit.ly/3ibQfOc.
— Vince Meehan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.