It's one of my favorite local events, and it's fast approaching - the 19th-annual Taste of Jefferson County sponsored by the United Way of Jefferson County.
What's not to like about this event being held Tuesday at St. Florian Hall in Wintersville, given there's food, food and more food, not to mention lots of desserts and chances to take home great prizes.
"Gems and Jeans" is the theme of this year's event, with doors opening at 5 p.m. Tickets are $30 per person with $20 of that amount tax-deductible.
The tickets can be purchased in advance by calling the United Way office at (740) 284-9000 or from event committee members. You also can get tickets at the door.
All proceeds benefit the United Way's 19 member agencies.
The three-hour event hailed as "a unique culinary experience" will give patrons an opportunity to sample the specialties of an anticipated 20 area restaurants, caterers and bakeries and enjoy a cash bar.
Patrons will be able to cast a ballot not only for the Best of Restaurants bragging rights, but also new this year for the Best of Bakeries honors, with the winners each awarded a traveling trophy.
Additionally, you can try your luck with a $10 ticket for the gift card tree; buy a mystery gift bag ticket for $10; or hope your key for $20 or six for $100 unlocks the treasure chest in which a grand prize comes from the generosity of Discovery Jewelers.
Jodi Scheetz is chair of the event that will feature food from new participants including the Dove Restaurant and Frank's, both in Bloomingdale; Texas Roadhouse in Steubenville; and LA Pizza and the Adena American Legion, both in Adena.
Joining them are event anchor establishments, including Manfred's, Aubrey's, Figurski's Catering, Piergallini's Catering, Mama G's Catering, Froehlich's Classic Corner, Zalenski's Family Eatery and Pub, Downtown Bakery, Iggy's Pizza and Pasta, Applebee's, the Ville Restaurant, Naples, Dolce Pizzelles Cookie Co., A Touch of Elegance and a chocolate fountain from Joe Ighnat.
Proceeds from the event will go toward the overall campaign goal for the United Way of raise $440,000.