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Get a taste of fun and food, East Dallas style

What has more than 30 restaurants, live music and a lot of fun?

The first annual Taste of East Dallas, which will take place Aug. 26, 5-8 p.m. at the Fair Park Tower Building.

The event benefits the East Dallas Chamber of Commerce and the Friends of Fair Park. It will feature food from more than 30 neighborhood restaurants, drinks, live music, door prizes and activities for children. Tickets are $15 and are available in advance at Dallas area Minyard’s Food Stores.

Once inside, all the food you can eat is free.

The event is being coordinated by the East Dallas Chamber of Commerce. Neighborhood residents Elizabeth Rivera with A.G. Edwards and Martin Zisman, owner of Martin’s Cocina, are co-chairing the event.

“I’m just excited we can do something that’s worthwhile,” Rivera says. “It will not only help Fair Park, but it will also help East Dallas.”

That is one of the purposes of the event, says Mary Cain, president of the chamber. In addition to raising money for the chamber and Friends of Fair Park, Taste of East Dallas will promote East Dallas businesses.

“We wanted to do a community event, something that would highlight East Dallas,” Cain says. “We get a lot more benefit from it.”

Honorary chairmen of the event are Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk, John Thompson, chairman of the State Fair Board of Directors and co-vice chairman of Southland Corp., and Bob Phillips of WFAA-TV Channel 8. Phillips will be master of ceremonies and will sell and autograph his book “52 Offbeat Texas Stops” at the event. He will donate a portion of his sales to Friends of Fair Park.

Live music is by Hand In Hand, and The Science Place and other museums located in Fair Park will sponsor children’s activities.

There are door prizes, including two tickets on Southwest Airlines, tickets to Southern Methodist University football games and dinners at neighborhood restaurants.

“I think it’ll make some people aware that East Dallas is still here,” says Raymond Erwin, owner of Raymond’s Bar-B-Que. Erwin says his restaurant is participating to promote his business and the community.

Other restaurants include Aromas Coffee/Henry’s Ice Cream, Barbec’s, Back Country BBQ, Chili’s, Dinger’s Catfish Café, Dixie House, Franki’s, Grady’s, Jason’s Deli, Radisson Hotel, Martin’s Cocina, Matt’s Rancho Martinez, Old Mill Inn, Snuffer’s, Sweet Temptations, Terilli’s, TwoRows, Whole Foods, Italian Oven, Pop’s Spagetti’s, Desperado’s, Alfonzo’s, TGI Friday’s, Doubletree Hotel, Sam’s Club and Golden Corral.

“Everyone is excited about the idea,” Cain says. “It’s good for the area, so it’s good for the businesses.”


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