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The independent news website of The Kent Stater & TV2


The independent news website of The Kent Stater & TV2


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Local Kent businesses encourage customers to try new foods during ‘Foodie February’

Lillie Leasure
Popped! is located in downtown Kent’s Acorn Alley at 138 E. main St.

Foodie February, a month-long activity hosted by Main Street Kent, encourages individuals to try new foods while supporting businesses in downtown Kent. 

The event, which will take place until Feb. 29, gives individuals a chance to explore all that downtown Kent has to offer. Participants will be given a bingo card and when a purchase is made at a local business, the card will get marked.  At the end of the month, participants can hand in their card to be entered into a drawing for a Kent gift card. 

Most Kent businesses are participating in the event, from coffee shops like Bent Tree Coffee Roasters to restaurants like Barrio.

Gwen Rosenberg, the owner of Popped!, a popcorn shop downtown, said her business participated in Foodie February because it is an enjoyable event and gave the business something to look forward to during the winter months. 

“It’s a lot of fun,” Rosenberg said. “It’s something fun to do during a normally quiet and cold month of the year.” 

Rosenberg said Foodie February is a simple and low-cost experience that people are looking for. 

“People are really looking for activities to do,” Rosenberg said. “Easy entry kind of activities that don’t require a lot of money or reservations.” 

Michela Rocco, the owner of Rocco’s Cupcake Café, said her business decided to take part in Foodie February because they did not have the opportunity to last year due to the business not being open yet.

“So, we actually didn’t get the chance to participate in it last year because we opened up a little bit too late,” Rocco said. 

Rocco said she is eager to have her business partake in the event this year and explained how she wanted to be a part of the community engagement the event brings to downtown. 

“I was really excited to participate,” Rocco said. “I know that it brings a lot of people to downtown Kent to support local businesses. I really wanted to be part of that this year.” 

Those who participate in Foodie February not only get a chance to win a Kent gift card, they automatically get an experience out of visiting local businesses. Rosenberg said participation encourages individuals to get out and have new experiences. 

“They get to go to different businesses, they get to go with their friends, have something to talk about, they get to try new food,” Rosenberg said. “They get to explore new businesses that maybe they have or haven’t been to before.” 

With new customers coming downtown, Rocco said she wants to get more customers to discover her business. Despite being in business for one year, she said people still have not heard about the café.

“I just hope to get our customers, people that may not know about us yet,” Rocco said. “We have been open for a year, but there are still definitely customers that we get every single day that are like, ‘Oh, I never knew you guys were here.’ We hope to get those people we may not have targeted before.” 

To attract new customers, Rosenberg said the company is doing what they usually do, which is creating items from scratch to draw in business, since their products can only be found at their store. 

“We’re consistently putting out a ‘from scratch’ product,” Rosenberg said. “The things that we make here you can’t buy anywhere else, so it’s unique to Kent.” 

With springtime on the way, Rocco said she hopes to see people come to downtown Kent and give new experiences a go. 

“I encourage everybody to get downtown,” Rocco said. “Try some new places you may not have tried before.”

MinJee Yoo is a reporter. Contact her at [email protected].

Tyler Schlosser is a TV2 Reporter. Contact him at [email protected].

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