You don’t need to show up wearing a shiny jumpsuit, gravity boots or a jet pack to enter this year’s Taste of Pulaski County and Basket Auction — but you might feel right at home if you do.
Scheduled from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 23 at the Ark Community and Sports Center in Waynesville, the space-based theme of this year’s event is “The Chamber and Beyond.” Organizers with the Waynesville-St. Robert Chamber of Commerce are promising visitors an “out-of-this-world” introduction to local cuisine, as well as an opportunity to bid on baskets assembled by local businesses.
“We have a space theme, and all the decorations and everything will be space-based,” explained Cecilia Murray, the chamber’s executive director, who added that, while costumes aren’t required, they are welcome.
“If people want to arrive in costume, they surely can. We won’t turn them away,” Murray said. “We’ve had people dress for the theme in the past. One year, when we had a super-hero theme, we even ended up holding a costume contest. So, if we have enough people show up in costume, we might have a spontaneous contest. You never know what will happen.”
Tickets for the event are $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 5 to 12 and free for children ages 4 and younger. The entry fee will let visitors sample menu items from 10 area restaurants and other food providers.
Participating restaurants include Colton’s Steakhouse and Grill, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, Domino’s, the Ozarks Coca-Cola/Dr. Pepper Bottling Company, Starbucks, Price Cutter Restaurant, Ruby Tuesday, Sweetwater Bar-B-Que, TK’s Pizza, and Vidie’s Catering.
“All of our participants will have booths. And once you pay to get in, you can go to all 10 of our restaurants and try samples all day,” Murray said.
Originally held as separate events, the chamber combined the Taste of Pulaski County with its annual basket auction several years ago with the goal of providing visitors with a day of family fun and entertainment.
The basket auction will begin at 11:30 a.m. Baskets include a variety of items, including coupons, gift certificates, tickets to major sporting events, collections of candy, retail items and more. Visitors can preview this year’s basket-auction items at the event website at www.tasteofplaskicounty.com.
The chamber is holding the event in partnership with the Show-Me Local Naturally Meramec program, which promotes tourism, local agriculture and culinary experiences in an eight-county area that includes Pulaski County.
For more information about the event, call the chamber at 573.336.5121.