In past years, Harrisonburg has celebrated its diverse dining options in March during the weeklong event Taste of Downtown. But last year’s event sank when news of the novel coronavirus drove patrons away from businesses.

Rather than abandon the annual affair, Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance is rebranding the event and declaring March as Downtown Harrisonburg Restaurant Month.

Participating culinary hot spots are offerings specials, promotions, exclusive menus and limited-time offers to draw guests, and HDR is hosting a monthlong giveaway to reward customers, according to a press release

Two winners will be drawn each Monday morning from receipts showing $25 minimum spending submitted the week prior. On the last Monday of the month, March 29, four winners will be drawn. The prize for supporting the downtown businesses will be $50 in Downtown Dollars to spend at neighboring establishments. Each $25 spent counts as an additional entry.

“This is historically one of the slowest times for downtown businesses, so this year, we wanted to spend a full month celebrating our beloved downtown culinary district,” HRD Executive Director Andrea Dono said in the press release. “Small businesses are still struggling to get to the other side of the pandemic and they still need our support.”

Participating businesses sharing in the restaurant month promotions include Billy Jack’s Wing and Draft Shack, El Paisano Bakery and OASIS Fine Art & Craft. For a full list of downtown businesses and what specials customers can expect, go to

Contact Kathleen Shaw at 574-6274 or Follow Kathleen on Twitter @shawkareport

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