PEQUOT LAKES - The aroma of beef stew, buffalo wings, prime rib soup and desserts filled the air Saturday in Pequot Lakes.
Several Pequot Lakes restaurants and eateries came together at Trailside Park for the 14th annual Taste of Pequot Lakes, along with about 70 arts and crafts booths. The event was sponsored by Grand View Lodge, Clamshell Beach Resort, Lakeland Agency, TDS Telecom and Mayson's Grille.
Sue Galligan, area coordinator of the Brainerd Lakes Chamber, said the event was started to give people something to do in the fall that would benefit businesses and the community. Galligan said the event has grown and now about 2,000 people attend the Taste of Pequot Lakes.
Mike Kerger of Pequot Lakes tried to convince his 2-year-old daughter Corissa to have a taste of his stew Saturday at Taste of Pequot Lakes by showing her how good it was. Brainerd Dispatch/Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
Food items at the event included shredded BBQ pork sandwiches and cheesecake from the Timberjack Smokehouse & Saloon; prime rib wraps and seafood chowder from Lakes Latte; prime rib soup, meats, cheese, fresh baked bread and doughnuts from the Birchwood Restaurant, Deli and Bakery; chili, buffalo wings and teriyaki wings from the Commander Restaurant and Bar; cranberry and turkey wraps, turkey and bacon wraps and gelato dessert from Mayson's Grille; meatball dips and French bread from Pestello's; and Roger LaPointe with Prudential Insurance who served Pru's Stew with crackers. The proceeds from the stew will be donated to the Patriot Foundation, a non-profit organization started in 1999 that supports innovative educational programs for the Pequot Lakes School District.
LaPointe said this is the foundation's first appearance at the Taste of Pequot Lakes. He said the foundation wanted to raise money as well as raise awareness about the Inaugural 2008 Tour of Colors Bicycle Ride that is coming up this Saturday.
LaPointe said the cooler temperatures helped the sales of the beef stew.
At the event, businesses either made a specialty item, a popular item with the customers or something that was easy to serve.
Jon Hervey of Timberjack's said the restaurant made its specialty item at the event, which is the shredder pork. Hervey said they made enough shredded pork to serve 500 sandwiches. People had a choice between a plain pork sandwich or they could have itS outhern style, which means BBQ and cole slaw are added to the sandwich.
Corissa may not have been all too sure about some of the dishes at the event but she had no qualms about munching down a cookie from the Birchwood booth. Brainerd Dispatch/Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
The shredded pork sandwiches were the main reason why Mike and Del Ria Kerger of Pequot Lakes came to the event.
"We love them," said Del Ria Kerger. "This is our second time here and there's a lot of good food. We got our sandwiches and we also had prime rib soup and the kids had cookies from Birchwood.
"We also like the crafts. It gives us something to do."
Gary and Alvina Tollas of Crosby were enjoying seafood chowder from Lakes Latte.
"We saw it and it looked good," Gary Tollas said of the soup. "It tastes good, too."
The Tollases have been coming to the Taste of Pequot Lakes for 10 years. They also are crafters and sometimes they have their booth at the event, but not this year.
"We thought it might rain," Gary Tallas said."We do wood carvings."
Despite her dad's obvious enjoyment of the stew, Corissa had some trepidation about the spoonful and decided against the dish without even tasting it. Brainerd Dispatch/Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
Alina Tallas said they attend a lot of the area events because each of them offers something different, especially when it comes to the food.
Gus and Glenda Fisker of Pine River and their daughter, Erin, 13, shared a wide range of food. Before 11:30 a.m., they had tried the prime rib wraps, the turkey and bacon wraps and doughnuts.
Sitting with the Fiskers was Lori Murrer of Pequot Lakes.
"I'm eating the meatballs from Pestello's and it's delicious," said Murrer. "And they must be good because my grandkids are fussy when it comes to food and they love it.
"I'm going to try the prime rib wrap next."
JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5851.
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