The Taste of the Beach, begun 14 years ago by the Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Chamber of Commerce, is taking place Feb. 25 at Friedt Park. Just follow the delicious smells to the tent by the park’s tennis courts and you’ll know you’ve arrived.
Perhaps the event’s longevity is due to the former Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Chamber President who devised the idea.
“She had a background in events and came up with the idea. As an event planner for President Bush she established a stellar reputation in the field,” said LBTS Chamber President Courtney Stanford.
And the crowds have swelled every year which is why they outgrew their original location and moved to the more spacious Freidt Family Park.
“ Freidt Family Park is a great location so I think this year’s Taste of the Beach is going to be the best on yet,” said Stanford.
Gathering under that tent will be some of the town’s most popular restaurants like Aruba, Pronto by the Sea, Delicacies and the newcomer Pump Sushi. To satisfy your sweet tooth, visit the Kilwin’s Ice Cream booth or The Art Institute Culinary School area where students will make delectable desserts.
“It’s great to have the students from the Art Institute at this event, we help raise money for small scholarships for them,” Stanford said.
Providing musical entertainment that afternoon will be a local DJ spinning tunes and Steve Young from the classic radio station Magic 102.7 FM.
Wash down all the scrumptious food with libations including beer and wine from Southern Wine & Spirits and National Beverage. Local brewery Funky Buddha is also expected to participate.
Steve de Leon of Pump Sushi is excited to be participating again this year, this time with his new establishment.
“I love helping out our community and bringing it more visibility by volunteering at this event. We all work together with the Chamber, who puts on a lot of great events to bring people to the town,” said de Leon. “The Chamber is doing a great job.”
And that unity is something that Courtney Stanford echoes when she says why people love this event.
“They love it because it showcases our local restaurants and has a real hometown feel making it different than other events of its kind,” she said. “It’s run by volunteers who are very hands on and everyone knows everyone. There’s a real warmth to the event.”