By ERIC BERNSEE
Building on the success of the inaugural Taste of Putnam County last fall, the second annual event promises to be bigger better, and -- dare we say -- even tastier.
Taste of Putnam County, presented by the Greater Greencastle Chamber of Commerce and the Dixie Chopper Business Center, is scheduled for 4-8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24.
"The Taste of Putnam County is not just a great event, it is also a great way to promote our Buy Local campaign," Chamber Executive Director Tammy Amor said.
"And to make it even better, the money you spend on those meals will continue to get redistributed back into the community through wages, taxes, donations, purchases, etc. It is truly a win-win."
The event, again scheduled at the Dixie Chopper Business Center at the Putnam County Airport, 102 Ballard Lane, Greencastle, will give people the chance to sample the fare from a variety of local restaurants.
The 10 participating vendors include Almost Home, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chief's, Final Approach Restaurant and Pub, Humble Pie, The Inn at DePauw, Pizza King, Putnam Inn, Treasures on the Square and Mill Pond Health Campus.
Each of the restaurants will bring from three to five of their specialty items -- not their entire menus -- to be tasted.
New this year, the local eateries will be competing for the title -- Best Restaurant. Diners may vote for their favorite restaurant, with the winner receiving the Taste of Putnam County Golden Plate.
While the restaurants will be located inside the building, organizers hope the weather will cooperate so that the bounce house, kiddie games and live music can be set up outside.
Entrance to the event is $5 per person (children 12 and under will be admitted free of charge), which grants each access to the facility and the free music and entertainment and enters each person in a drawing for a 42-inch flat-screen TV donated by Bank of America Home Loans.
Individual food tickets are $1 each for the menu items you select from the 10 vendors. Some items may cost more than a single $1 ticket.
Amor said no vendor is to have items priced at more than three tickets. Restaurants will also keep the menu simple with limited items, so it simply remains a taste of what they have to offer.
"The goal is, hopefully, you're going to want to sample something from all of them," Amor said.
Besides the food, the event will also feature a taste of local music with live performances by local artists Blues Side Up, Saturday Shoes and Barbara Ellen.
There are also kids' games, including a bounce house from Big Bounce Fun Rentals. Kid game sponsors include Bright Futures, First National Bank, Hickory Creek at Sunset, The Waters of Greencastle and Mill Pond Health Campus.
For adults looking for a game of their own, there will be a cornhole boards provided by the Putnam County Sheriff's Department for free entertainment.
Sponsors of the event include the Greater Greencastle Chamber of Commerce, Dixie Chopper Business Center, the Banner Graphic, Duke Energy, Walmart Distribution Center, Greencastle Offset Printing & Graphics, Crossroads Communications, Big Bounce House Fun Rentals, Bank of America Home Loans, Putnam County Hospital, Logical Choice Inc., Teachers Credit Union and Bittles and Hurt/Hopkins-Rector funeral homes.
"You're always looking for unique events. There's something for everybody at this," Amor said.