It is one of the area’s most anticipated annual festivals, but the Taste of Montgomery County also fulfills an important role: the Taste is the largest fundraiser for the General Lew Wallace Study & Museum, located on the grounds in Crawfordsville where Lew Wallace penned his masterwork, Ben-Hur. The 15th annual Taste of Montgomery County will be held noon to 10 p.m. Saturday.
This year’s Taste features three musical acts. The Elizabeth Lee Duo (1 p.m.) will perform chill covers from recent decades. Eliana Weston (4:30 p.m.) brings Nashville country back home to Indiana. The Warrior Kings headline at 8 p.m. playing hard rock with a blues soul. Local food and beverage vendors serving specialties throughout the day include Aki Les Voy! Takeria, China Inn, Coal Creek Cellars Winery, Greek’s Pizzeria, Hoosier Ice Queen, Jesus Kettle Corn, Juniper Spoon, Street Penguin Gelato, Sunoco, Warehouse Bakery and Wildfire348.
New to the TASTE this year is Klooz Brewz. Klooz Brewz is an artisan brewery and public house located in Lebanon. Brew master Patrick Klooz is a lifelong Lebanon resident and seasoned homebrewer, who wants to share his expert crafted beers and beverages. Visit https://kloozbrewz.com/ to learn more about their offerings. Other first-time TASTE vendors include Four Seasons, bringing Triple Berry Crumble and Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese; Harry’s Hideout with Lobster Rolls and Chicago Dogs; and Jarocho Minimarket, bringing their delicious Guacamole and Green Juice.
The site of the Taste, the General Lew Wallace Study & Museum at 200 Wallace Ave., was once General Wallace’s backyard, lying just north of his home on Wabash Avenue. Many people attending the Taste don’t realize that the area near the General’s bronze statue, where hundreds of Taste-goers will congregate this weekend to hear the great live music beneath the shade, was once the site where General Wallace set up his rocking chair under the spread of a giant beech tree, to work on his writing in peace and solitude. Wallace wrote a significant portion of Ben-Hur under this tree, known as the Ben-Hur Beech Tree.
The General’s Study building is one of the gems of Crawfordsville and has seen visitors from around the globe for more than 100 years. The Study is filled with the General’s original artifacts and personal memorabilia, most of which have been in the Museum’s collection since Wallace’s death in 1905.
All revenues from admission ticket sales at this year’s Taste will fund the Museum’s extensive programming and annual exhibit. This year the museum’s annual exhibit focuses on recent acquisitions to the Museum’s collections. Museum programming in 2022 includes the ongoing Hoosier Authors Book Club, the Dr. Howard Miller Lecture Series in September and October, and the Hoosier Author Fair in November. Information about fall programming is online at www.ben-hur.com/events.
Tickets for the Taste can be purchased at the gate for $7 for adults and $3 for students. Children 6 and under are free. Advance tickets can be purchased through Friday at a discount: $5 for adults and $2 for students. Advance tickets are available at the Carriage House Interpretive Center of the General Lew Wallace Study and Museum; the Montgomery County Visitors and Convention Bureau at Fusion 54; Milligan’s Flowers & Gifts at 115 E. Main St.; and Crawfordsville Parks & Recreation Community Center, 922 E. South Blvd.
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