Brian Howe Band, Holy Water
Rotary International is a world wide group of business owners and other professional individuals that perform charitable and humanitarian functions. They have at present over thirty five thousand clubs with a membership well over one million. Locally, the Rotary Club of Bonita Naples, was founded in 1992, and their contributions with both time and money in the community have been impressive. One fundraising event, the Taste of Bonita (TOB), is held in Riverside Park in Olde Bonita Springs.
|Band shell, Riverside Park, 2018 Taste of Bonita|
This event was structured differently than in the past as tickets were required for entry. The focus of TOB this year was more towards entertainment than food. Twelve vendors were at TOB that day as opposed to about thirty in past events. Nonetheless, there was some good food to be had here from Bonita Springs-based restaurateurs.
Buffalo Chips restaurant were serving their signature wings among other fare.
|Buffalo chicken wings from Buffalo Chips|
Angelina's Ristorante had samples of their signature butternut squash ravioli. It was delicious, in house made pasta stuffed with roasted squash, mascarpone cheese and topped with a sauce of citrus, sun dried tomatoes, arugula and candied pecans.
|Butternut squash ravioli, Angelina's Ristorante|
|Doc Ford's Rum Bar and Grille|
|Farmer Mike's U Pick|
offering items made from produce on their farm from their onsite restaurant such as pumpkin pie, lemonade and on site grown strawberries with cream.
|Offerings from Farmer Mike's U Pick|
Smokin R's BBQ had some delicious grilled items for attendees,
|Smokin R's BBQ|
while if you were in the mood for Greek food, Zorba's Mediterranean Grille and Bar served gyros, a real crowd pleaser, in addition to other Greek foods,
and if you were in the mood for something sweet, Petar's had a very nice strawberry and banana crepe with chocolate sauce.
|Strawberry and banana crepe|
There were also a number of vendors serving pizza, ice cream, pretzels but most notably of these was Kona Ice, serving shaved ice treats
|Kona Ice truck|
with their patented "Flavorwave" technology. All in good fun!
The music ranged from tribute bands to Slow Ride, a band composed of former Foghat members (remember them?)
|Slow Ride band|
to the headliners, the Brian Howe Band. Mr. Howe took over as lead singer of the band Bad Company from 1986-1994. I particularly liked this version of the Bad Company song, Rock and Roll Fantasy.
Brian Howe Band, Rock and Roll Fantasy
This year's TOB emphasized music over food which was great, but I think a more balanced event may have been been better. The entrance fee may have reduced the crowds somewhat but for the price of admission the headliners, the Brian Howe Band, were totally worth it. I appreciate the Rotary wanting to take this event to the next level and I think that they will be successful perhaps given a more robust balance of food, music and marketing. I hope that the Rotary Club of Bonita Naples will continue on this tack for future events as Taste of Bonita could very easily become a premier annual event in Southwest Florida.
|Brian Howe, Brian Howe Band|
It's a wrap for another post on Forks.
The 25th Annual Taste of Bonita
The Rotary Club of Bonita Naples
P.O. Box 1092
Bonita Springs, FL 34133
Taste of Bonita Facebook Page