The Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area today announced the return of the District’s 38th Annual Summer Festival: “McDonald’s Presents Dragon Fest 2013.” Tens of thousands of visitors will flock to Seattle’s historic Chinatown on Saturday, July 13th from 12p.m. to 8p.m. and Sunday July 14th from 12p.m. to 6p.m. to enjoy a weekend of world-class entertainment and international cuisine designed to appeal to all palates and budgets.
To accommodate growing demand for the annual “$2 ID Food Walk”, event organizers have expanded the event’s footprint on South King Street and created a stand-alone menu which offers a greater selection for this year’s hungry festival goers. An additional eleven restaurants have joined the Food Walk, including neighborhood newcomers Bun (featuring Vietnamese Five Spice Chicken Wings) and the Eastern Café (which will be serving up Paradiso Iced Teas).
“With three new neighborhood restaurants opening this summer, and eleven restaurants joining this year’s food walk, Chinatown is a buzz with new bites!” says Don Blakeney, the Executive Director of the ChinatownInternational District Business Improvement Area. “And this year we have added our new neighbors the Massive Monkees to the entertainment roster to round out this truly global block party.” The Massive Monkees are a world-renown breakdance group that recently located their studio in Chinatown’s historic Milwaukee Hotel as a part of the Storefronts Seattle program.
Festival goers will still be able to find all of Chinatown’s revered restaurant staples like Tai Tung, Sea Garden, Harbor City, Sun-Ya, Honey Court, Purple Dot, Sub-Sand, Fuji Bakery, and Henry’s Taiwan, who will be showcasing over 60 $2 menu items from across Asia and the Pacific. This year, diners who sample five or more of the participating restaurants will be eligible to enter a drawing at the event to win an iPad Mini and gift certificates to local businesses.
Adding to the wealth of food choices at this year’s Festival, international mobile food favorites will be on hand, including the Filipino/Vietnamese mash-up, Xplosive, and Tokyo Dog, Chopstix, Box Nature Sushi, Bean Fish Taiyaki, Shabu Chic Shave Ice, and Tako Kyuuban Takoyaki—making this event the premiere Asian-Pacific Islander food event in the region.
Spirited Lion and Dragon dances, rhythmical Japanese taiko drumming, Chinese martial arts demonstrations, Asian drill team performances, and other multi-cultural entertainment will come to life on the Dragon Stage, while children from around the region will delight in the variety of interactive Asian arts and crafts including: dragon mask making, face painting, lion dance lessons, outdoor pinball machines, and the ever-popular Splat-a-Paint booth. To celebrate the Year of the Snake, the Pacific Northwest Herpetological Society will bring Hing Hay Park to life with live snakes and reptiles to educate and interact with children and families.
“Nowhere else in the region can you see international performances from so many countries on one stage,” says Ben Grace, of the Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area. “Come for the culture and the food, stay for the late night dance party and happy hour.” To quench the thirst of the adult festival-goers, Chinatown’s 2nd Annual “$2 Double Happiness Hour” will give foodies a chance to wash down their bites with $2 drinks. On Saturday, from 4p.m. – 9p.m., bars from around the neighborhood will be featuring $2 drink specials. The Festival will also feature an outdoor traditional Japanese sake and beer garden on Saturday and Sunday.
New this year, the Chinatown-International District has partnered with local high school radio station C-89.5 FM (KNHC) to host an outdoor “International Dance Party” below the historic Chinese gate on King Street. Local DJ celebrity Richard J. Dalton will be spinning Top 40 dance tracks with special guest dance performances and others from 8p.m. to 12 midnight on Saturday, July 13th. Hollywood Lights has been hired to install a 36” disco ball under the Chinese Gate on Saturday morning for the late-night, all-ages dance party.
For more information about the $2 ID Food Walk, the 2nd Annual Double Happiness Hour or “McDonald’s Presents Dragon Fest 2013,” log onto www.SeattleDragonFest.com or follow updates on Facebook and Twitter @iheartID . For more information on Chinatown-ID or District restaurants, check out www.SeattleChinatownID.com.
This international food and music festival, organized by the Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area, has no admission fee. Any proceeds from the event will benefit the economic revitalization of the Chinatown-International District.
The Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area (CIDBIA), founded in 1994, works to improve and promote Seattle’s Chinatown-International District. In addition to providing sanitation services, the CIDBIA coordinates several of the neighborhood’s major events including the Night Markets and Lunar New Year Celebration, in addition to Dragon Fest. The CIDBIA also advocates on behalf of its constituents with respect to a host of public policy, planning, and quality‐of‐life issues. For more information about the Chinatown-ID BIA, log onto www.cidbia.org.