Local restaurants, caterers to offer their selections at Taste of Mecosta event

Attendees at last year’s Taste of Mecosta event go through the line to sample foods from area restaurants and caterers. This year, Taste of Mecosta will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Conference Center, located at 1005 Perry Ave., in Big Rapids. (Pioneer file photo)

BIG RAPIDS — Attendees of this year’s Taste of Mecosta event may want to wear their stretchiest pants as they sample food from more than a dozen area caterers and restaurants.

The 13th annual Taste of Mecosta is set for Tuesday, Feb. 20, at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Conference Center, located at 1005 Perry Ave., in Big Rapids. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., area residents can get a taste of what the community has to offer in local cuisine.

While in the past the event has had narrow themes, such as Hawaiian or Mexican, this year’s theme is Taste of the World, which is more broad, said Jennifer Heinzman, Mecosta County Area Chamber of Commerce executive director.

“This year it’s up to the individual vendors to show us what they can do; it’s completely open,” she said. “It’s going to be interesting to see what they come with,”

Falconhead Golf Club, The Pie Hole, Applebees, Altercare, Tullymore Golf and Resort, 4C’s Cookies, Bob Evans, Ferris Catering, Two Hats Ranch, #52 Sports Bar and Kitchen, Crankers Brewery, Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital, Chicken Shaq (Maple Street Grill), Tropical Smoothie and Three Girls Bakery will all be bringing tasty treats for attendees to enjoy.

There also is room for two more vendors, but interested parties need to contact the chamber soon, Heinzman said.

The event is limited to 400 tickets sold and currently there are about 100 tickets left. Heinzman said tickets have sold out the last two years, so no tickets were available at the door.

“We offer tickets the day of the event, but that’s only if we have any left,” she said.

Taste of Mecosta, which is sponsored by Lake Osceola State Bank, benefits Leadership Mecosta with proceeds from the event going toward scholarships. Leadership Mecosta participants will be on hand to discuss the program. New this year, an acapella group from Ferris State University will be performing.

The event is an opportunity to bring numerous restaurants and caterers from the area into one location to showcase what they have to offer, Heinzman said.

“We’ve had vendors from as far as Edmore, so people from here can get a taste and see if they’d like to go visit the restaurant on a Sunday drive maybe and explore a bit,” she said.

People planning events such as weddings, business luncheons or family reunions can get samples from numerous options in the area by attending Taste of Mecosta, Heinzman added.

“You get the opportunity to try the food before you hire someone,” she said.

Tickets are $10 in advance, $5 for ages 3 to 8 and free for ages 2 and under. Tickets can be purchased online at mecostacounty.com or by contacting the chamber at (231) 796-7649 or email events@mecostacounty.com.

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Posted by Emily Grove

Emily is the Pioneer and Herald Review crime and court reporter, covering crime in both Mecosta and Osceola counties. She can be reached by e-mail at emily@pioneergroup.com or by phone at (231) 592-8362.

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