West Columbia’s “Taste on the River” a highly anticipated good time

“Taste on the River” is the West Columbia Beautification Foundation’s signature event. This year it is from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 27, at Stone River in West Columbia.

Melissa Sprouse Browne leads the WCBF and she said “Taste on the River” is one of the most-anticipated events of the year.
“We’re very excited. It was so much fun last year,” said Sprouse Browne. “We can’t wait for it this year.”

Taste on the River includes a host of local restaurants – presenting the dishes they choose to offer- at more than a dozen tasting stations.
“Last year’s Taste on the River was a huge success,” said Kelli Ricard, special events planner for the City of West Columbia. “Great food, great view, and great people, equals great fun.” And she’s not the only one who says that.

“The food is delicious,” said Bill Mooneyhan, one of the key organizers- with Steve Cohen- of the first Taste on the River, a year ago. “But it’s more than just food.” It’s a chance to come out and spend time with the people of the community that you love to see. There’s a spirit there that shows who, and what, we are in West Columbia.”

Silent auction

Spouse Browne echoed Mooneyhan’s sentiment.
“We have some very good people in our community,” she said. “Taste on the River is an opportunity to showcase West Columbia, and show what we’re all about.

Sprouse Browne also said the response to Taste on the River was overwhelming in 2017. “Our 2017 event was very well-attended, with almost 200 guests,” she said. She is hoping for an even bigger crowd in 2018.

“We have 13 restaurants. More than we had last year. And we have room for a couple more,” said Sprouse Browne. “And we’ll open the pavilion at Stone River this year. It was not open last year during the event.”

This year’s Taste on the River will include a silent auction, just like last year, but Sprouse Browne said bidding opportunities – and tickets – will be available on-line at: Click here to buy tickets, or access online silent auction bidding

Ricard said even if you cannot come to the event, you can bid on the auction items.
Items included in the auction range from gift baskets to vacation packages. And Sprouse Browne said an artist will be on-hand, creating a painting, that will be sold at auction at the end of the evening. Ricard explained even more.

“We have mural artist, BA Hohman who will at Taste on the River, working live. She has generously donated her time and talent to help beautify West Columbia. One lucky bidder will be able to take home her amazing work at the end of the evening,” said Ricard.

All proceeds benefit the West Columbia Beautification Foundation’s efforts. A noble cause.
“Our mission is to make West Columbia a more beautiful place,” said Sprouse-Brown. To do that the WCBF buys and plants trees, like the hundreds that have been planted on Sunset Boulevard. Sprouse-Brown said the WCBF also adds flows and shrubs in places where planting trees are not the best option. “We want to make West Columbia more aesthetically pleasing,” she said.

Lainie Lewis is a WCBF Board member. She helped last year, and she’s helping to plan this year’s party.
“We were thrilled with the amount of support we got last year,” said Lewis. “We hope it’s even better, this year.”

Tickets are $50, and that includes two drink tickets and event admission. There is a cash bar. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS AND TO SIGN UP FOR ONLINE BIDDING: Click here to buy tickets, or access online silent auction bidding

Restaurants presenting (so far) include: Al’s Upstairs; Blue Marlin: Zesto of West Columbia; Grecian Gardens; Schlotzsky’s Deli; Cafe Strudel; Carolina Cafe; Delucca’s; Brookland Baptist Church; Parkland Cakes; True BBQ; Dupre’s Catering; and Hudson’s Catering.

Also visit: Beautify West Columbia.org for more info.