Meriden's Nites in the City Opens with Wine, Food, Art
MERIDEN — The annual Nites in the City event opened Thursday evening downtown with wine tasting, a variety of food offerings and an art show.
“Main and Vine” marked the first of two evenings for the 16th annual event, held outside at the police/court complex on West Main Street. It featured more than 25 domestic and imported wines, beer samples, food from local restaurants and an art show and sale.
Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Meriden, Nites in the City raises money for local nonprofits. The groups benefiting this year include Meriden Youth Theater at the Y, Literacy Volunteers of Greater New Haven, and United Way of Meriden-Wallingford.
Yvonne deAngeli-Fontanez, event chairwoman, said 24 local restaurants participated in the Taste of Meriden.
“It’s a record-high donation from local restaurants,” she said. Bob’s Package Store coordinated the food and drink donations.
She said the event is expected to draw 400 to 500 per night.
“It’s beautiful weather, that helps,” she said.
At the event entrance, Meriden police collected money for Hurricane Maria relief, and gave out information on the department’s upcoming 150th anniversary next year.
Karen Jamie, owner of Wepa Art Bar, coordinated the art show for the second time, and it was her fourth time as a participant.
She said this year’s show drew six artists from Meriden, Waterbury and Hartford. All artwork was for sale. People received a glass stone to cast a vote for their favorite artist.
“The show gives the artists an opportunity to show their work,” she said. “It gives the residents of Meriden access to artists, to art they can purchase, to art made locally.”
As trays of food circulated and drinks were served, people mingled, chatted and were entertained as Mayor Kevin Scarpati sang from the stage for “luck be a lady tonight.”
Diane Dornfried, of Berlin, attended Thursday’s event for the first time.
“It’s always nice to taste good wine,” she said.
She said the event was recommended by friends, including long-time event-goer Doreen Marinaro, of Meriden.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Marinaro said, “and it supports the community and nonprofits.”
Nites in the City continues Friday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. with Silver City Whiskey and Brewfest, which features wine samples, entertainment and food. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door, and available at Bob’s Package Store, Four Points by Sheraton and the Meriden YMCA. Attendees must be 21 or older.
Written by Lauren Takores, Record-Journal staff
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