More than 45 businesses and restaurants in Downtown Reno make up the Reno Riverwalk Merchants Association. Eighteen of those restaurants teamed up Saturday to host the Dine the District Self-guided Food Tour.
It's just like a wine walk, but with food only. Every restaurant served samples of one of their speciality foods.
"In my wine bar we're serving artisan cheeses that are hand selected," says Rick Martinez, owner of West Street Wine Bar and President of the Merchants Association.
Half of the proceeds from the event go to the restaurants, and the other half goes to the merchants association. During a similar event in June, the Merchants Association raised $8,000.
Much of that was spent on improving Downtown Reno.
"For instance the flower beds you see along the river," explains Martinez, "we spend thousands of dollars."
This event is good for Downtown Reno, and also for hungry people. Folks on the food tour say it's a great experience to sample so many unique foods.
"It just gives you a chance to walk around the area, and see all the new places," says Julia Parker. "And so I've been picking up menus so next time I say I want to go out for dinner, I've got a good resource."
An opportunity to expand your culinary horizons, some would say. The manager at Bowl says they see a lot of people come through who don't even know the restaurant existed.
"They come through, and they get to try our food," says Heather Fuss, a manager at Bowl. "So it's a lot different than just putting an ad out there where people don't get a clear picture of what it is you're doing."
Businesses with the Merchants Association hope that by working together and holding more events like these, it will bring in more customers.
"Ultimately the more people you have coming down to eat food in the downtown area, then everyone's doing better," says Fuss.
Folks with the Merchants Association say they will host this event again, but there is no set date yet.
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