WATERVILLE — Organizers on Monday were gearing up for the 25th annual Taste of Waterville, which is expected to draw about 10,000 people downtown on Wednesday for food, live entertainment, children’s activities and a beer garden.

With downtown revitalization efforts underway and a new Colby College residential complex being built on the northeast end of The Concourse, Taste organizers have moved The Bite, vendor section and the beer garden to new locations this year.

The fenced-in beer garden will be in Castonguay Square off Common Street, with bands to be set up on the west end of Common Street near Larsen’s Jewelry and dancing to be on the paved street. The Bite and vendors will be on the southeast side of Haines Park in The Concourse, and children’s activities will be on the northeast side of that park.

As usual, restaurants will set up booths on Main Street where diners can order their meals and sit at tables in the street near the restaurants.

Presented by the Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce, the Taste draws people from all over Maine and beyond to enjoy the area’s culinary delights and socialize with old friends, according to Kimberly Lindlof, the chamber’s president and chief executive officer.

Lindlof said Monday that organizers hope the new locations for events will become permanent, but if they need to be tweaked in the future, they can be.


“The beginning of August is always a special time of year for us in this area because the Taste happens,” Lindlof said. “It’s just such a great community event where people catch up with each other, and neighbors and friends unite. We love to share the fact that we have so many individually owned restaurants in our region at this time.”

The Bite, children’s activities and vendors open at 11 a.m.

The Bite offers food by Asian Cafe, Aucoin Concessions, Governor’s restaurant, Itali-ah, Laurie’s Lunch, Mei Dream, Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter, Pat’s Fudge, Pat’s Kitchen, Spectrum Generations, Stan’s Fries, Twisted Concessions and T’s Snowie Bus. Chicken, pizza, burgers and dogs, French fries, homemade soft pretzels, strawberry shortcake, ice cream, fudge and cotton candy are just some of the food to be featured.

Vendors include R U Ready to Party, Care & Comfort, Refuse to Sink Jewelry, MaineGeneral Medical Center and many more. Children’s activities include inflatables, a petting zoo and face painting. Haines Park performers will include Kennebec Valley Chordsmen, Rob Burnell, James Pryor and Mike Reny. Dance Connection, Decal Gymnastics and Young Americans Dance Center will perform at the corner of Main and Temple streets.

Beer Garden entertainment will include Downeast Brass, Taylor Road and Stolen Mojo.

Both the beer garden at Castonguay Square and restaurants to be featured on Main Street will open at 5 p.m.


Restaurants to be featured are Amici’s Cucina, Cappza’s Pizza, Holy Cannoli, Jewel of India, MaineGeneral Medical Center, Mainely Brews, Mei Dream, Oak Grove Rehabilitation & Living Center, Parsonage House, Pete’s Pig and The Last Unicorn.

A highlight of The Taste will be the third annual Amici’s Cucina Meatball Eating Contest to be held at 7:30 p.m. on Main Street in front of that restaurant.

A new feature this year will be a demonstration by Don Emery’s Meats & Produce to be held at the Camden National Bank pocket park on the south end of Main Street, according to Kelly Smith, the chamber’s new programs assistant.

“He’s going to have two large grills to do grilling and food demonstrations, and that is from 4:30 to 6 p.m.,” Smith said Monday.

An information booth will be set up in the park next to KeyBank on Main Street. From 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., golf carts will be available to shuttle Taste patrons back and forth between downtown and the large parking area at Head of Falls off Front Street, Smith said.

Main Street will be closed to traffic at 2 p.m. Wednesday. Parts of The Concourse will be closed Tuesday night to allow vendors and eateries to start setting up early on Wednesday, she said. Signs will be erected to notify motorists of the closure.


“We’re excited about the new location of the beer garden in Castonguay Square,” Smith said. “It’s central to the downtown and it’s a beautiful atmosphere, and I think it’ll be easy for people to enjoy some great food and hear music, but at the same time, if they want to enjoy a glass of wine or a beer in Castonguay Square, they can.”

The Taste, she said, allows for a nice day and evening out for families and individuals.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17

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