Taste of the Town event brings traffic to historic Hillside

Published 11:30 am Monday, April 11, 2022

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By Chase Davis
Special to the Daily News

On Saturday, the Junior Service League’s Taste of the Town Event and DASH’s Hillside Art, Music, and Food Festival combined to create a spectacular street market festival in the Hillside neighborhood.

The festival spanned across Lincoln, Jefferson, and Garfield streets, and featured 40 different art, music and food vendors. This was DASH’s 7th year of putting on the Hillside festival, and JSL’s 5th year for Taste of the Town.

One of the event’s primary goals was to bring people from the LaGrange area to the historic Hillside community, DASH’s main-focus area for almost 20 years.

“I would say our biggest focus is on celebrating local small businesses and specifically bringing people to the Hillside area,” said Sam Craig, director of development for DASH.

Nate Crawford, executive director of DASH, said that they want to get more community members to visit the Hillside neighborhood.

“We love to have people out here to see what we are doing, to drink great beer, to eat at great restaurants, and really getting foot traffic on the ground,” Crawford said.

Junior Service League’s goal for the festival was for it to serve as a fundraiser for the Exceptional Way Program, which is a daytime program for adults with disabilities. Nicole Spivey, Chair of the Taste the Town event, said that the proceeds raised were going toward getting Exceptional Way a second bus so that the program can take more field trips as it continues to grow. 

The partnership between DASH and Junior Service League allowed for both festivals to increase their foot traffic and to expand to more vendors.

“This was an awesome partnership and collaboration, and we hope to do this together again,” Craig said.