Save some time Saturday to visit the 2012 Taste of the Arts festival at the Arts United campus on Main Street downtown. Activities run noon-7 p.m., with a Meet the Music at Dessert party with Julia Meek until 10 p.m.
This arts, culture and food festival is a revival of sorts of the former Fine Arts Festival. Dozens of local restaurants will be selling food and 68 performances are scheduled. The event is free, but food and beverage sales support regional arts organizations.
There will be nine performance areas, including a stage in the Museum of Art sculpture garden dedicated to electronic music. Classic ballet and contemporary dance will be presented, as well as scenes from popular plays. The award-winning Voices of Unity choir will participate.
But this is a food column, so let's talk about that. More than 30 restaurants will be selling samples of bruschetta, burritos, cheesecake, bangers and mash, and more.
Here is a sampling of some of the restaurants that will be selling food: B. Antonio's Pizza, Brava's Dogs, Friendly Fox, Granite City Food and Brewery, J.K. O'Donnell's Irish Ale House, Purple Mountain Cheesecake, Shigs N Pit and The Venice.
Tickets for food and beverages, including beer and wine, will be $1 each, with most items requiring one to four tickets.
Other events include hands-on activities, a Busker stage with street performers, an Art Marketplace with artists selling paintings, photos, pottery, jewelry and handbags. Fort Wayne Youtheatre is hosting a rummage sale, the History Center is open for free, and Cinema Center will offer free movies.
Let's not forget the dessert party. WBOI, 89.1-FM, program host Julia Meek will record her show “Meet the Music” 6-10 p.m. Food and beverages will be served.
Citilink is offering free bus service all day, or people can ride their bikes or walk downtown on the Rivergreenway.
The Summit City Chef 2012 Competition benefiting the Fort Wayne Children's Foundation will be Sept. 13 at Sycamore Hills Country Club. It's an opportunity to sample award-winning dishes from some of Fort Wayne's top chefs and raise money for the foundation, which works to prevent child abuse.
The event begins at 6 p.m. Tickets are $200 per person ($2,000 per table), with proceeds supporting the foundation.
Summit City Chef will feature many of the community's top culinary professionals in an “Iron Chef”-style competition. In addition to awarding the top prize of “Summit City Chef” trophies will be awarded for best dessert and best wine. Participating executive chefs will include Brian Shreffler from Chop's, Jesse Arnold from Club Soda, Matthew Nolot from Eddie Merlot's, Bun Lim from Sycamore Hills Country Club (last year's winner) and Tiercell Schwartz from T W Fable.
Celebrity judges include yours truly; Charles Shepard III, executive director of the Fort Wayne Museum of Art; and Chuck and Lisa Surack of Sweetwater Sound. Buy tickets by calling 417-3938 or by visiting www.fortwaynechildrensfoundation.org.
Founded in 1997, the Fort Wayne Children's Foundation's mission is to break he ravages of the “circle of abuse,” enabling children to achieve their fullest potential. The foundation raises funds and contributes to agencies involved in and dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect and to counseling and treating abused children and their families.
Have you heard the buzz about Dig IN: A Taste of Indiana, a food festival noon-5 p.m. Sunday at White River State Park in downtown Indianapolis? Indiana chefs, brewers, wineries and food artisans will prepare their signature dishes and drinks using local products. Speakers will address food issues, and you can watch cooking demonstrations. There will be music, urban gardening exhibits and more.
Aaron Butts from Joseph Decuis in Roanoke will serve Wagyu tongue and cheek tacos.
Tickets are $30 in advance, $40 at the gate. Tickets for children ages 5-10 are $10; ages 4 and younger are free. As part of the ticket price, visitors get 2-ounce tastes of dishes made with farm-fresh Indiana produce and proteins. Go to www.digindiana.org to learn more and order tickets.
The Olive Twist, 6410 W. Jefferson Blvd. in Covington Plaza, is hosting an Olive Oil 101 and Simple Appetizer Class 6:30-8:30 p.m. Sept. 6. Learn to properly taste olive oils and sample simple appetizers made with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Cost: $8, advance tickets only. Call 436-3866 to sign up.
Something happening at your eatery? Call Cindy Larson at 461-8284, fax 461-8817, e-mail email@example.com or write Restaurant Notes, C/O The News-Sentinel, PO Box 102, Fort Wayne, IN 46801. This column is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinion of The News-Sentinel. To read other columns, go to www.news-sentinel.com/section/LARSON.