12th annual Taste of Pinecrest was fun for all


12th annual Taste of Pinecrest was fun for all

Patrons blanket the lawn at Deering Seafood Festival.

Pinecrest certainly knows how to party. And, as it has been for the last 12 years, the Taste of Pinecrest on April 6 was a fun day for everybody.

Presented and organized by the Pinecrest Business Association, the annual spring event draws the best food, entertainment, rides and performances from the surrounding community. Utilizing nearly all of the 20 acres of Pinecrest’s signature park, the party nestled its activities and food among more than 300 varieties of rare and exotic tropical plants and palm trees.

Returning from a one-year departure to support the opening of the new YMCA in Falls, this year’s Taste of Pinecrest was a bit quieter and in tune with nature. Throughout the day more than a dozen performances by area school children filled the air with song and voice.

Mayor Cindy Lerner celebrated Palmetto High School’s accomplishment of almost 1,600 links in their “No Place For Hate” paper chain and said, “It’s great to see the Pinecrest Business Association return to Pinecrest Gardens and support our schools like this.”

The 10th annual Deering Seafood Festival was a complete sell-out as nearly 10,000 hungry people drove, biked, walked and used the free shuttle to partake in this annual seafood pilgrimage.

12th annual Taste of Pinecrest was fun for all

Howard Drive Elementary students singing at the Banyan Bowl.

Of the Estate’s 444-acres, all 14-acres of their beautiful “back yard” was alive with music, food and happy patrons.

At the all-day event, crowds took in celebrity chef cooking demonstrations from, among others, Oceanaire, Ocean Reef Club, Pierre’s at Morada Bay and Truluck’s sharing how they make their meals special. Several audience members asked questions, tasted and learned from the master chefs.

Families not only ate great food, but also had lots of other activities to keep them entertained. The little ones enjoyed Deering Discovery Cove (a scavenger hunt) and the Li’l Shrimp Kids Zone filled with bounce houses, rock climbing and play activities. And everyone could stroll the artist village, take a historic tour, enjoy a walking tour of the manicured grounds or take a pontoon boat ride.

The main event, of course, was food, with the aromas emanating from all corners. Golden Rule Seafood, Sports Grill, Rodbenders, Black Point Ocean Grill and half a dozen other food and drink vendors made sure that if you wanted it, they could deliver your favorite menu item.

12th annual Taste of Pinecrest was fun for all

Charlotte Lily Kula and her proud parents.

“Without the amazing sponsors, none of this would happen,” said Mary Pettit, executive director of Deering Estate Foundation. “It is they who lay out the up front money and both Deering and the community at large who benefit.”

The largest food sponsor, Golden Rule Seafood, served up a ton of goodies. “We brought a raw bar with stone crabs, raw oysters on the half shell, signature shrimp, cocktail shrimp, crawdaddies,” said operations director Courtney Reeder. “We also have fried shrimp, conch and fish.” As if that wasn’t enough, a traveling band called Bahamian Junkanoo Review paraded around in colorful costumes with stilt walkers and music. A main stage provided great music throughout the day.

“It’s been great,” said Christine and Rene Ortega from Cutler Bay. “We’ve been enjoying the day and the festivities. Every year we taste a little bit of everything. We’re getting down on all of it!”

On April 9, more than 250 people from Bet Shira Synagogue helped welcome Charlotte Lily Kula to their congregation during a joyous baby naming ceremony. Charlotte is the newborn daughter of Rabbi Mark Kula and wife Coreen Duffy. During the service, Rabbi Kula noted that “it takes a village” and what a miracle and blessing Charlotte is to their lives. At times he laughed and at times he held back tears of joy. It was a love-filled evening for all. Founding Rabbi David Auerbach gave the benediction.

12th annual Taste of Pinecrest was fun for all

Executive Director Mary Pettit is thankful for the Deering Seafood Festival sponsors.

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Hal Feldman (MiamiHal) is a Realtor with RE/MAX Advance Realty. Contact him with your story ideas or real estate questions at www.MiamiHal.com, Hal@MiamiHal.com or www.facebook.com/MiamiHal.

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