An event that allows attendees to taste food and beverages from a variety of Whidbey Island businesses will raise money for a project to help revitalize downtown Oak Harbor.
The Oak Harbor Main Street Association is hosting Wines, Bites and Brews from 2 – 5 p.m. on March 25 at the Oak Harbor Yacht Club. All proceeds will go to the Main Street Association’s Serendipity Lane project, a walkable pathway connecting Pioneer Way and Bayshore Drive.
“What it creates is a corridor from the shopping district to the water,” Oak Harbor Main Street Association Executive Director Margaret Livermore explained.
An arch was the first phase of the project to be completed. The path from the arch to the waterfront is city property. Livermore said the plan is to remove the asphalt and replace it with concrete, plant greenery and install street lights. Another benefit would be to ease the limited parking on Pioneer Way by creating easy access from parking on Bayshore Drive.
Several local drinking establishments and restaurants up and down the island are participating in Wines, Bites and Brews. Livermore said some of the association’s board members attended a wine tasting and thought it would make a good fundraising event. Wines, Bites and Brews will feature not only wine, but beer, liqueur and whiskey.
Spoiled Dog Winery, Dancing Fish Winery and Comforts of Whidbey are supplying the wine, Flyers, Wicked Teuton and Penn Cove Brewery are providing the beer and Whidbey Island Distillery will serve different types of liqueur and whiskey. Deception Cellars in Anacortes will offer mead.
Frasers Gourmet Hideaway, Rustica and Zanini’s Deli will serve appetizers. Mad Batter Bakehouse, Whidbey Island Cocoa Company and Popsies are providing desserts.
Along with the food and drink, people will receive a customized wine bottle bag and glass, a wine stopper from Tipsy Jellyfish and a “recovery bag” for anyone who may need some supplies the day after.
Livermore said the event is only one of the ways the association is raising money for the project. The Oak Harbor City Council recently approved a $20,000 grant application and those who wish to donate money will receive an engraved plaque on the walkway. Council previously approved $100,000 of American Rescue Plan Act funds for the walkway. The project is estimated to cost $2000,000 in total.
Livermore said completing Serendipity Lane would only be the first step in revitalizing the city’s waterfront.
The goal is to complete the project by November 2023. Tickets cost up to $85 and are available at oakharbormainstreet.org.