Hundreds Turn Out as Taste of Wayne Kicks off Freedom Week

Hundreds Turn Out as Taste of Wayne Kicks off Freedom Week

Hundreds of hungry Wayne County residents braved the heat at The Hub in downtown Goldsboro at the United Way of Wayne County’s 33rd annual Taste of Wayne on Thursday evening. 

The event kicked off Freedom Week, a celebration of military personnel and first responders.

Event-goers were treated to a wide array of Wayne County’s finest restaurant and beverage options, as 26 different vendors were on hand. Taste of Wayne attendees voted on their favorites in five different categories.

The band 581 South provided live music throughout the evening.

“For me, and for the United Way, we love that Freedom Fest is all about community,” said Sherry Archibald, United Way of Wayne County. Executive Director. “They welcomed so many players to come in and make such a big community effort to really recognize and support our first responders and our military. We’re excited to be a part of it. It was a great event, and we had some wonderful vendors and we so appreciate their willingness to donate and give of their time and their services here so we can have such a wonderful event.”

Artis Daily Bread, located at 2103 N. William Street, won in the main entree category. Despite having won awards at multiple Taste of Wayne events in the past, owners Karl and Patricia Artis never grow tired of being recognized by the community.

“Taste of Wayne has definitely helped us with people we’ve met who didn’t know who we were in the past,” Karl Artis said. “Then they find out where we’re located, so it has definitely helped our business grow. As far as what it means, it’s very prestigious for us to win this award several times. We put a lot into it, so we’re very blessed and very thankful.”

Preparing to make a positive impression and hopefully gain new customers at an event attended as well as Taste of Wayne is each year takes plenty of dedication and hard work.

“There’s a lot of prep work that goes into it,” Karl Artis said. “A lot of shopping and a lot of planning. It’s just a collaboration between my wife and myself, as far as making the menu, and making sure everybody is on point, as far as where they’re supposed to be at all times. We have a young lady, Tanyetta Tarpley with Royalty Linens, who helps us set up our tent and our decorations, and she does a great job.”

Eagletown Grill, located at 516 NC-581 South in the Rosewood community, earned first place in the best side dish category. For owners Jorge and Ashton Gonzalez, taking home an award in their first experience at Taste of Wayne brought about tears of joy.

“It was just nice to win with all the hard work we put into the business,” said Ashton Gonzalez. “We couldn’t do this without our staff. We’ve been in our location for three years. There was a lot of work and a lot of stress to get ready for today. Hopefully exposing our business outside of the (Rosewood) area will help us continue to grow.”

Legacy Cakes, located in the Memorial Commons shopping center, on Wayne Memorial Drive, received the most votes in the sweets category.

Justo’s Grillin & Catering earned first place in the food truck category and Hydrant Church won the best beverage category.

Freedom Week continues on Friday evening at Freedom Field as Joe Brown & The Band will delight the crowd with their party style approach from 6 to 9.