Taste of the Races to kick off 2011Roar on the River

By Evelyn Cairns
One of the most popular attraction of the Trenton Rotary Club’s Roar on the River — Taste of the Races — will kick of the annual three-day celebration at 6:30 p.m. Friday on the Elizabeth Park waterfront.

Tickets are $30 in advance, or $40 at the door, for all you can eat plus two drinks. Tickets from the 2010 rainout can be exchanged for 2011 tickets. For details, call (734) 675-0266.

Among the approximately 30 restaurants offering their specialties at the tasting will be Brooklyn’s, Café West, Fratello’s, Ponderosa, Savannah’s, Sibley Gardens, the Rhapsody and TV’s Deli and Diner. Providing entertainment will be Nandez and Hidden Agenda.

Among the new highlights of Roar on River will be a Roar Idol contest with prizes of an iPod nano, first; $100 Meijer gift card, second; and a $50 Best Buy gift card, third.

Preliminaries of the talent competition will take place Saturday, with the contest to be held from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday at Elizabeth Park. The registration deadline is July 21. For contest rules and details, call (734) 925-3783.

Other new attractions will be a four-person airborne bungee bouncer and a climbing wall sponsored by the U.S. Army. In addition, the U.S. Navy’s Horizon Band and the popular Category 5 will present free concerts Saturday. Fireworks will start at dusk.

Returning attractions will include the Detroit Pistons Automation Dancers and daily personal watercraft exhibitions by Typhoon Tommy and team.

The greatest draw of all — the races — will start at 2 p.m. Saturday and continue on Sunday. Boy Scout Troop 1721 will hold pancake breakfasts both days, and a car show and racing-awards ceremony will take place Sunday.

For additional information, go to www.roarontheriver.com.

BBQ contest set in Taylor
Barbecue cooks and aficionados from throughout Michigan and surrounding areas will converge on Taylor’s Heritage Park beginning at 11 a.m. Saturday for the Michigan Rocks BBQ Nationals debut competition.

Cooks will vie for trophies, cash and other prizes while rock bands perform music of the Beatles, Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin and Jimmy Buffett. Participating bands will be Fifty Amp Fuse, BritBeat, Toys in the Attic, Led-Hed and Changes in Lattitude.

The Taylor contest winner will compete for the BBQ Nationals Grand Championship crown in October in Laughlin, Nev.

Tickets for the Taylor cookoff are $10. Children 12 and under will be admitted free if accompanied by a ticketed adult.

Attendees will be able to sample the barbecues and purchase other food and beer. Sponsors of the event are Townsquare Live Entertainment and WOMC-FM 104.3.

Birthday party set at Fairlane
The city of Detroit will celebrate the 310th anniversary of its founding at festivities planned for Saturday and Sunday throughout the metropolitan area.

Parties and special activities have been scheduled by the Detroit Historical Society at the Detroit Historical Museum, Dossin Great Lakes Museum and five shopping malls.

At the Fairlane Town Center, visitors will be served cupcakes and snacks from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, and storyteller Linda Boston will lead a presentation on the Underground Railroad and the role the Detroit River played in the city’s history.

Other participating malls are the Westland Shopping Center, Somerset Collection, Northland Center and Macomb Mall. For more information, go to www.detroithistorical.org.

Coming up . . .
July 29, 30, 31 — Southgate Heritage Days Retro Weekend, featuring mayor’s walk, parade, family picnic, contests, fireworks, and art, car and ice shows; on the grounds of the Southgate Municipal Complex, 14400 Dix-Toledo Road; for more information, go to www.southgate-mi.org.

July 30 — Nadanta dance concert, “Renaissance Man,” honoring the 150th birth anniversary of Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore; 7 p.m. at the Michael Guido Theatre of Ford Community & Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn; for tickets, $20, $30 and $50, call (248) 705-8224 or (248) 661-3580.