Slice of Saugatuck Entertains Westporters

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By: Francesca Truitt ’17

Westport’s foodies spent the afternoon sampling Saugatuck’s most popular food venues, local bands and retailers on Saturday, Sept. 10. From two to five, the fifth annual Slice of Saugatuck festival entertained Westerports, at $10 for adults, and five dollars for kids under 13; proceeds from ticket sales went to the Gillespie Food Pantry.

As people roamed around downtown Saugatuck, they heard eight bands and musicians at six different venues, sampled food from the 25 participating restaurants, and shopped at 21 merchants.

Pat Weiser was working the event on Saturday, and she got involved in the festival through Homes with Hope, which runs the Gillespie Center, the beneficiary of the event. Weiser was beyond pleased with the turnout this year.

“Oh my God, it’s unbelievable! It gets bigger every year, we’ve already run out of all our stickers,” she said. “It’s a great community event, people seem to love it. It kinda gets them outside, wandering around eating some food.”

After purchasing a ticket, participants could sample food from any of the venues on the tasting list, including Black Duck, Parker Mansion, Viva Zapata, Saugatuck Sweets, and the Whelk, among other locations. At each venue, participants would check off the location from the restaurant and retail tasting list printed on the back of the ticket.

If people visited 10 or more venues, they became eligible to win one of the many 25 dollar gift certificates in the raffle.
Tarry Lodge, a popular venue involved in the festival, served iced lemonade and margherita pizza. Lauren Mirabella, a manager at Tarry Lodge, was most excited to get more involved in the Saugatuck community.

“This was something we wanted to be a part of so people could try our food, and everyone could come together,” Mirabella said.

Even Staples teachers from outside of Westport came to experience Saugatuck’s best restaurant and retail venues. Ashley Tomlinson, a math teacher at Staples, came to the festival with her husband from their home in Norwalk.

“I think it’s a great way to get everyone together on a nice weekend, and have them get to know Westport and their food offerings,” Tomlinson said. “I’ve only been in Connecticut for one year, so this is a great way for me to get familiar with it.”

Staples students also found the festival a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Zoe Hulina ’18 came to the event with a group of friends that she organized at sports practice earlier that day.

“As a cross country runner, there’s two things I value most, eating and walking,” she said. “Both of which we’re doing right here, right now.”

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