‘Taste of the Valley’ kicks off Summer in West Side

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A soggy start Thursday night to an annual event that serves as the unofficial kickoff to summer in West Springfield.

Thursday was opening night for the four-day festival of food and fun known as “West Side’s Taste of the Valley.”

At least a dozen restaurants and caterers set up booths on the Park Street Common and serve up everything from baked potatoes to pulled pork to pierogies and Kielbasa.

West Springfield resident Dan Murphy came with his step son as he does every year.  He told 22News the “Taste” provides an opportunity to see people you lost touch with during the winter, creating a lot of excitement over Summer.

He said the rain didn’t bother him one bit.  “Over here in West Side, we like to call it ‘Big E weather.’ You know you’re gonna get maybe one day with a little rain.  But hey!  The weekend’s coming up.  Looks like the weather’s gonna be awesome.  Channel 22 said we’re gonna have two great sunny days. So I’m going with that,” Murphy said.

They’re expecting 40-thousand people over the next three days.

The Taste of West Side is sponsored by the city of West Springfield and the Rotary Club, and is staffed by hundreds of volunteers, according to the “Taste” website.

The Taste runs through Sunday night at 6:00 p.m.

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