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Second Street Festival 

Tastemakers

The annual Second Street Festival is back again and we talked to Downtown Presents about what you should expect on your plate.

African-American life in Richmond centered on Second Street back in the 1920s, '30s and '40s. Since it was a cultural center for three decades, you'd expect this festival to offer a look back at those times, but that's not really the case. Sure, they offer some 1940s big band music, and you'll be able to get up close to some cool vintage cars, but mostly this festival seems to celebrate Second Street's history in spirit only. The shopping concentrates on the contemporary, and so does the music, with R & B and gospel groups filling most of the bill.

Food is an area that offers a great chance to take a trip back through time. Alas, expect to see a lot of hotdogs, hamburgers similar festival food this weekend. Other basics mentioned were ribs, barbecue and sausage.

Luckily, Croaker's Spot on Second and Leigh will be open, with a stand coming off their patio in addition to their normal indoor seating. Croaker's will concentrate on their specialty, their delicious Famous Fish Boat, fried fish with sautéed peppers and onions.

The Second Street Festival takes place Friday, Saturday and Sunday on Second Street between Broad and Leigh. It regularly attracts more than 50,000 Richmonders and visitors.

Wine watch: On Wednesday, Oct. 10, City Bar & Rotisserie hosts a wine dinner featuring seven red zinfandel wines paired with seven courses. City Bar & Rotisserie was opened over the summer in the Historic YMCA Building in Shockoe Bottom. It specializes in turn-of-the-century rotisserie-style cooking. The cost of this wine dinner is $75. 649-2489.

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