Celebrating Centertown

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:32 AM

“There has been a lot of activity and a lot of investment in all parts of the district,” Main Street DDA Executive Director Dana Kollewehr said. “We feel there’s a lot of variety, and a lot of unique products and services.”

Flavor of Centertown begins with a brief program honoring the U.S. Coast Guard and other branches of the military. A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Coast Guard boat displayed on Seventh Street will immediately follow. Guests will then be invited to sample the flavors of Centertown restaurants by purchasing taste tickets priced at $1 each.

“There are so many great eateries in Centertown, and we wanted people to be able to experience them all in one day,” Kollewehr said. “Every restaurant in Centertown is participating in Flavor of Centertown.”

Kollewehr said 60 percent of the proceeds from the tasting event would go to support veterans.

Reaiah Ellsworth, manager of Morning Star Café, 711 Washington Ave., said that she was looking forward to showcasing some of her restaurant’s baked goods.

“I think that it’s good having the different businesses in the area highlighted,” she said. “We’re always busy, but I know some other businesses need attention.”

Anthony Gonnella, owner of Anthony’s Kicked Up Catering, 211 N. Seventh St., said the Centertown event will give people an idea of what else there is to offer in Grand Haven.

“We kind of feel like we get left out of a lot of things downtown," he said.

Gonnella said other events that have taken place in Centertown have proven to be a hit.

“I think what really brought this to the forefront was when we did the ArtWalk event,” he said. “The turnout was fantastic.”

The food samples won’t be the only thing visitors can look forward to Saturday. Centertown retailers, service businesses and organizations will also be involved with a special "passport raffle" drawing created specifically for this event.

“We’re encouraging individuals to visit the businesses and get their 'passports' stamped,” Kollewehr said. “It’s a fun way to get people inside the businesses.”

Those who travel to at least 15 different businesses, obtaining 15 or more stamps in their "passports," will be eligible to enter a raffle drawing for an assortment of prizes. Prizes include a barbeque grill, gift certificates and merchandise supplied by Centertown businesses.

“While people wander around sampling all the flavors of Centertown, there will be a large collection of artwork to view, too,” Kollewehr said. “Professional artists and other members of the public will be creating military-themed paintings in storefront windows throughout the district.”

Bryan Snuffer, a Muskegon artist with paintings in the Pentagon and other government buildings, will have some of his works on display at Lemon Creek Winery, 327 N. Beacon Blvd.

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