Metro Detroit’s ultimate summer event, the 18th annual Comerica TasteFest, was enjoyed by more than a half-million people over the Fourth of July weekend in the New Center Area. The all-ages food and music festival, held June 30 through July 4, showcased more than 40 of Metro Detroit’s most popular restaurants, offering a diverse international assortment of foods and a stellar line-up of free local and national musical entertainment.
“This event has taken on a life of its own,” said Charlene Cole, Comerica civic affairs officer and education manager. “We knew early on that we had a winner here and each year it seems to get bigger and better. The music, food and fun was something that everyone could enjoy – and did.”
And while a great time is always had by all, there is another purpose or this party. The street festival is a fundraiser for the charitable endeavors of event producer New Center Council. Among the neighborhood projects that will benefit from funds raised at this year’s Comerica TasteFest are an award-winning youth program and the maintenance of the New Center’s outdoor public spaces.
“We strive to produce a top-quality event and this year was no exception with one of the most diverse collections of cuisines we’ve ever had, as well as one of the hottest musical line-ups in the 18-year history of the Comerica TasteFest,” said Randall Fogelman, festival director. “We are also fortunate to have the unique historic urban setting of Detroit’s New Center to host this great party, and it’s very gratifying to hear all of the positive feedback from festival goers about the neighborhood’s many new developments.”
Visitors to the five-day event consumed the following: 15,000 coconut shrimp served by Sweet Lorraine’s, 6,000 Sticky Fingers’ ribs, 15,000 servings of Cold Stone Creamery ice cream, 4,000 Mini Grand Burgers grilled by The Grand City Grille, 7,000 Coach Insignia Lobster Corndogs, 2,200 Centaur Bar Cheesecake Lollipops, 500 Bangkok Bistro spring rolls, 9,200 pounds of potato chips from The Potato Factory, 5,000 Carolina pulled pork sandwiches smoked and served by Lazybones Smokehouse, 10,000 ears of sweet corn roasted by Aw Shucks, 10,000 free fortune cookies courtesy of Asian Village, 3,350 Coney Man hot dogs, 10,000 bowls of gumbo dished up by Louisiana Creole Gumbo, 3,500 Italian sausages grilled by Mario’s, 4,000 servings of General Tso’s Chicken from The Rice Bowl Asian Kitchen, and more.
In between bites, Comerica TasteFest visitors kicked back to enjoy some fantastic live music. This year’s headliners on the MotorCity Casino Main Stage included 2006 Grammy winner Common; 60s pop stars Eric Burdon & the Animals, former leader of the Kinks and prolific songwriter Ray Davies, southern garage rockers Kings of Leon, alternative vocalist Cat Power & the Memphis Rhythm Band, Vancouver’s superstars of indie rock the New Pornographers, power punk pop band the All-American Rejects, perennial pop-jazz group Spyro Gyra, legendary R&B and gospel singer Mavis Staples, punk-pop group Damone and gospel vocalist J Moss, among others.
In addition to Comerica Incorporated, sponsors of the 2006 Comerica TasteFest included MotorCity Casino, Budweiser, metroPCS, AT&T, Diageo, Windsor Casino, Burt’s Bees, Cold Stone Creamery, Ravenswood, Harley Davidson, Pure Detroit, Starbucks, HAP, Detroit Pistons, Henry Ford Health System, AlertnessMatters.com, Stoneyfield Farm, Farbman Group, Trizec Real Estate Services LLC, General Motors Corporation and Orton Development.
Each year more than 500,000 visitors fill the streets for the Comerica TasteFest, held adjacent to the historic Fisher Building on West Grand Boulevard between Woodward Avenue and the Lodge Freeway.
For more information about Comerica TasteFest, please visit http://www.comericatastefest.com/ or call (313) 872-0188.
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