There’s a new event coming to Tennessee’s Oldest Town June 4 and it’s guaranteed to spark the interest of both young and old.
Soda Fest is designed to expand your taste buds with exposure to flavorful soda pop while providing a different festival style experience bringing generations together while sampling a variety of different sodas, some you’ve heard of and some that will make your taste buds ask for more.
“The idea is simple and we will incorporate an initiative for business to be open later downtown,” Jeff Gurley said. “Alive after 5 is an organized effort to promote Historic Jonesborough on Saturday evenings during the summer months. Most downtown businesses and restaurants will be open later on Saturday evenings June through August.”
Jonesborough’s downtown is already Alive after 5 on Saturday evenings with food, outdoor movies and theatre performances, and the Jonesborough Area Merchants & Services Association wanted to make an effort to give the community somewhere to eat, shop and be entertained in their hometown during the summer months.
“There are wine tastings and beer festivals. I thought Soda Fest would be something different and fun for the entire family to enjoy.” Gurley said.
Soda Fest will take place from 4 to 8 p.m. with soda stop tastings all along Main Street and Jonesborough’s Historic District. Each soda stop will include a soda jerk who will be pouring the samples in 2 oz. cups for festival goers to enjoy. Beginning at 7 p.m. there will be live music and a sock hop. At 8 p.m., Bottle Cap Bingo will take place in front of The Lollipop Shop, followed by the popular Movies on Main featuring a family friendly outdoor movie at 8:45 p.m.
Soda Fest will also feature a separate “Root Beer Garden” with more than 30 flavors of Root Beer to sample from vendors all over the United States. The Root Beer Garden will be available 5 to 7 p.m. and will require a separate ticket that will be available for purchase during Soda Fest at 4 p.m.
“One of the most talked about soda stops has been the totally gross sodas from Avery’s Beverages including Bug Barf, Zombie Brain Juice, Toxic Slime, Monster Mucas, Kitty Piddle and Dog Drool,” Gurley said.
Those who enjoy nostalgic candies from the past will savor the Astro Pop Pineapple, Cherry and Passion Fruit flavors. Mexican Pepsi and Coke will also be available with classics like Cheerwine, Nehi Peach, Orange Crush and NuGrape. Green River Snappy Lime has the sweet taste of a lollipop and its bright green color has been around since 1919.
“While many people have enjoyed Orange Crush, did you know there is a Strawberry Crush and Grape Crush too? We’ll have those classic sodas, as others might be tempted to try our bizarre flavors too,” Gurley said.
If sampling rare sodas is your goal, the Peanut Butter and Jelly, Chocolate Chip, Bacon, Pumpkin Pie, Sweet Corn, Buffalo Wing and Ranch Dressing flavors will also be on site for tasting.
Soda Fest will take place on June 4 and will be similar to the popular Chocolate Fest event held in Jonesborough this past February, with each soda tasting requiring one ticket. Ticket packs are available in increments of 15 tickets for $11.50. Each ticket pack purchase will include a commemorative 2016 Soda Fest bottle and each child attending Soda Fest will get their own soda jerk hat while supplies last.
For more information on Soda Fest visit their event on Facebook or call 423-913-2663. Tickets will be available May 11 by visiting jonesboroughtn.org or calling the Jonesborough Visitor Center Box Office 423-753-