Every big city has a chance to showcase their communities businesses, volunteer and governmental organizations but what the about small towns? Can they do the same? Of course they can! I had the pleasure to attend the Taste of Douglasville where you can get the chance to taste the local flavor!! This year was bigger and better than ever with the Theme of “Better Living”. This is the 19th year with the assistance of the Cultural Arts Council of Douglasville, Cobb and Paulding Public Health Department . The wonderful local paper called the Douglas County Sentinel highlighted this event.
There was 20 restaurants that were featured with a variety of dishes such as Italian, Chinese, Irish, Seafood, Mexican, BBQ and Soul Food. There was food sampling and full course lunch with certain prices of course. There were awards that were given to the restaurants for Best New Restaurant, Best Presentation for their booth, Most Sold and one new award, the Better Choice Award for healthy menu items.
The festival had around 40 creative vendors that were selling handmade jewelry, custom-made crochet items, recycled wind chimes, hurricane lanterns, cut and tied fleece blankets, crocheted baby blankets, centerpieces, paper art, 100 percent recycled t-shirts, marionettes, homemade dog treats, hand-embroidered children’s clothes, local cookbooks and many more creative works. There was demonstrations participation such as pottery making, clay art tribal Henna body art, hands-on bowl-making workshops, face painting, balloons and bubbles designing and mixed media sculpture making.
The theme of this year “Better Living” was focused on having several national and local health- and fitness-focused booths. The organizations that participated were the American Heart Association, Douglas County Cooperative Extension Service, CORE and Live Healthy Douglas Coalition. A very interesting thing had happened this year where there was no smoking allowed near the festival and smokers were allowed to walk about five blocks away from the festival to smoke. This new rule was inducted due to the “Better Living” theme which is a great thing that Douglasville decided to do! I had a chance to volunteer with the Master Gardeners/4H Group booth. I had a chance to sell organic tomato plants, give out water to the hot crowd and answered questions about gardening.
I was truly proud to see that over 12,000 people show up to the Taste of Douglasville and that the local community made a effort to promote local businesses and healthy living theme. Way to go Douglasville!!