Changes Might be in Store for Taste of Athens

20 March 2014

ATHENS – The fundraiser for Athens nonprofit social service agency Community Connection, Taste of Athens, may be undergoing changes. The executive director hinted at the upcoming changes as Tuesday’s Athens Downtown Development Authority Board meeting.

Community Connection Executive Director Fenwick Broyard attended the ADDA meeting for discussion with the board regarding possible expansion of the event. The event currently focuses on featuring local restaurant samples at The Classic Center in downtown Athens. Boryard mentioned that Taste of Athens could capitalize on the city’s growing reputation as a ‘foodie’ haven. He also said that Taste of Athens plans to start ‘casting a broader net’ by bringing in people from other areas to sample local food offerings and to learn from local chefs.

The problem for Community Connection, however, is that the expansion would call for extensive staffing and other resources beyond what Taste of Athens currently has, Broyard admitted.

The annual Taste of Athens event still remains popular with ticket holders- this year, it attracted 1,600 people. Despite the popularity with ticket holders, the number of vendors was down this year from 60 to 54, Broyard said. However, he notes that this year’s event did fall on Valentine’s Day Weekend, which may have affected some vendors.

The options open to the ADDA board in regard to helping assist the expansion of Taste of Athens include allowing ADDA staff to help Community Connection and to allocate some of the ADDA’s Community Enhancement Program funs to the event.

No formal decisions were made at the meeting Tuesday.

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