Taste of Brunswick to mix food, music, fundraising

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BRUNSWICK — The delay of the fifth annual Taste of of Brunswick has produced some extra benefit for the community: a chance to both enjoy music and fight local food insecurity.

For the first time, the Sept. 28 event on the Town Mall is partnering with Singing For Their Supper, an annual event held by the Midcoast Hunger Prevention Program that combines live music with its fundraising efforts.

“When we realized MCHPP was having an event in September, we thought those two would work well together,” said Debora King, executive director of the Brunswick Downtown Association, which holds the annual foodie event. “We feel they are such a good organization that we wanted to be able to help out.”

Patrons will have access to food from 14 participating restaurants and eateries, along with a chance to donate to the hunger prevention program and listen to local music.

Tickets for Taste of Brunswick are $22 in advance, $25 at the event and $12 for children 10 and under. In addition to offering food samples from several restaurants, Taste of Brunswick will also have wine and beer provided by Sea Dog Brewing Co. 

This year’s Taste of Brunswick was postponed from June due to a lack of participating restaurants. Organizers said because Singing For Their Supper was already scheduled to happen around the time of Taste of Brunswick’s rescheduled date, it made sense for the two events to collaborate.

“We felt if we had it all in one spot we could generate a larger crowd,” said Ethan Minton, a MCHPP board member and brand manager for radio station WCLZ, who arranged promotions and music for the event. “Logistically, it made sense.”

Like previous years, a portion of proceeds from Taste of Brunswick will go MCHPP, but the organization will also be soliciting additional donations.

Minton said the hunger prevention program is hoping to raise $20,000, a slight increase from what it raised at last year’s inaugural event.

Although the funds will be used to support various programs and services provided by MCHPP, Minton said the organization will be shining a light on its new BackPack Program, which launched for nearly 200 elementary school students in the Mid-Coast area earlier this year.

The program provides food for children who may not have access to nutritious meals on weekends. MCHPP’s fundraising goal for the BackPack Program is $50,000, Minton said.

Some of the proceeds from Singing For Their Supper are expected to come from the first part of the event, a day before Taste of Brunswick, on Sept. 27 at the Frontier Cafe on Maine Street.

There, the organization will a host a concert by Brunswick resident Pete Kilpatrick, who has toured with national acts like Jason Mraz and the Dave Matthews Band. Also scheduled to appear is The Alternate Routes, a Connecticut-based rock band.

While the Friday-night concert will cost $18 for admission, Saturday’s musical offerings during Taste of Brunswick will be free; local music acts Amy Allen, Spencer Albee and the Maine Marimba Band will perform.

Minton said all of the local musicians agreed to perform for free; The Alternate Routes agreed to play for a discounted fee.

Dylan Martin can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or dmartin@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @DylanLJMartin.