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SHERIDAN — Main Street and Coffeen Avenue may seem quieter than usual Sunday afternoon, as Taste of Sheridan is expected to draw a sizable crowd to Thorne-Rider Park.
Dubbed Wyoming’s biggest family picnic, the event kicks off Sunday afternoon at 3 o’clock.
Nancy Silla, chairperson and organizer, said last year’s event drew a crowd of approximately 1,500, and she’s hoping to see that number grow this year.
“This is basically an opportunity to showcase Sheridan area restaurants,” Silla said. “People can have one-on-one meetings with the chefs and see who they are, which is a good thing.”
Fifteen dollars at the gate buys a guest a sheet of 10 “taste tickets,” which can be traded at the booths of 13 Sheridan restaurants and caterers for sample-sized entrees.
After patrons have explored the wide selection of cuisine, they have the opportunity to vote for their favorite dish. The business with the most votes is awarded a plaque in commemoration of the People’s Best Taste award. Last year, that honor was nabbed by Remington’s.
Oliva’s Kitchen will also be competing to keep the traveling trophy for the Judge’s Best Taste award, which is awarded by vote of a pre-selected panel of refined palates.
Sunday will mark the fifth year for the Taste of Sheridan, but the event includes four new businesses: Qdoba Mexican Grill, Frackleton’s, Warehouse 201 and Big Horn Mercantile.
While Bagels and Beyond has participated in years past, this year’s event will be a first for the business’s new owner, LaDonna Daniels. She has decided to use this year’s appearance to tout some of the “beyond” features of her menu.
“We’re bringing pizza this year,” Daniels said. “It’s mostly for those who don’t know we have it.”
Other returning participants include Sugarland Mining Company, Killy’s Smokehouse, Midtown Cafe, Pony Grill and Bar, Bighorn Mountain Catering and Yogi’s Pantry.
In addition to filling up on a dinner of eclectic dishes, Taste of Sheridan guests are invited to bring blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy live music provided by Canary Joe, The BT’s and Gary Small and the Coyote Brothers.
The event is designed to be family friendly, and includes both games for kids and a beer and wine garden for adults.
Taste of Sheridan is the hallmark event for the North Main Association, which will use the opportunity as a platform to promote public education about the North Main revitalization project and the plans for reclamation when the Wyoming Department of Transportation relocates the Interstate 90 interchange.
There will also be representatives available to field questions regarding the upcoming vote for Sheridan College’s bond initiative.