April event promoting locally owned restaurants

Saturday, March 27, 2004

To promote locally owned restaurants, Old Town Cape is organizing an all-you-care-to-try event called A Taste of Old Town, to be held from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. April 29.

"The restaurants of downtown Cape are already well-known for the quality of their food and service," organizer Catherine Dunlap said. "This will be a chance for them to put out their finest foods for people to try."

Dunlap, the executive director of Old Town Cape, borrowed the idea from eating establishments in downtown Columbia, Mo. In Cape Girardeau's version, people can purchase a $20 ticket that will get them samples of the fare from eight downtown eateries. Those participating will be Bella Italia, Buckner Brewing Company, Cafe Azu, California Juice Club, Sidewalk Sandwich Company, Port Cape, Nick's Family Sports Pub and the Royal N'Orleans.

Port Cape owner Dennis Cain said he's never seen anything quite like this in his 16 years in downtown, but he likes the idea.

"It's fitting," Cain said. "There are so many wonderful restaurants here. I'm sure everyone will put on a good showing."

Although Cain's not sure exactly what he or the other eateries will offer, he expects any competition between establishments will be friendly, because the event will serve the common good.

Participants will take their ticket to be punched by each establishment they visit. Those who visit all eight will be entered into a drawing to win a gift certificate to any of the restaurants.

Tickets go on sale April 1 at Old Town Cape and all eight restaurants.

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