Pickin' Picnic 2016

pickin-picnic.jpgDowntown Bradenton comes alive with this family-friendly, free event featuring free craft beer tasting, food trucks serving up creative fare, a food truck battle, local vendors offering handcrafted items and services, a PopUps for a Purpose lounge, and live music by the region’s most exciting musicians and groups.

Live Music, Craft Beer, Food Trucks!

Realize Bradenton will rock Bradenton's Riverwalk with the fifth Pickin' Picnic showcasing the region’s music scene. The festivities begin at 2 p.m. with a food truck battle, followed by live music starting at 3 p.m. and continuing through the evening until 10 p.m. The event is free and takes place at the Pavilion on Bradenton's Riverwalk, 452 3rd Ave. W. in downtown Bradenton. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs. Food and beverages will be available to purchase. This year's Pickin’ Picnic is presented by BB&T Bank. Other sponsors include C&S Community Management Services, Inc., Heintz & Becker Law Firm, Firkins Nissan, Tobacco Free Manatee and Manatee Technical College. For more information, visit RealizeBradenton.com/PickinPicnic.

“Pickin’ Picnic began as the brainchild of Justin Labadie, a musician in the local band, Faceless Bandits, a previously featured musical act,” says Johnette Isham, executive director of Realize Bradenton, the organizing force behind Pickin' Picnic. “It’s a wonderful example of how area artists, nonprofits, business owners and audiences partner to build vibrancy in our community.”

The festivities get underway at 2 p.m., with "Battle of the Food Trucks," a cook-off incorporating a mystery ingredient with a panel of local celebrity judges rating each dish. The battle is emceed by Kirsten Sponseller of Sarasota Day. Judges are Michael Ludwig of BB&T; Chef Rov Avila, a culinary arts instructor at MTC; and Cooper Levey-Baker, associate editor for Sarasota Magazine.

Beer aficionados will have the opportunity to sample locally-made craft beer from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., or while supplies last. In addition, patrons may purchase handcrafted brews and chat with the brewmasters from Darwin Brewing Company, Big Top Brewing Company and Motorworks Brewing. Domestic beer, wine, soft drinks, and water will also be available for purchase. In addition, local vendors will be selling merchandise.

Food Trucks

  • Ain't No Thang: Featuring simple ingredients to create inspired taste sensations that nourish the body, mind, and soul.
  • Traveling Kitchen: Offering a traditional American menu and Latin-style pulled pork.
  • Chefs2U: Featuring a variety of culinary experiences and with food prepared fresh by culinary chefs. (Last year's Food Truck Battle winner) 
  • B's Cool Treats: Serving the tasty frozen treats and desserts.
  • Ammy's Catering: A family-run food truck that uses the highest quality ingredients to create the perfect menu.


  • Alcover Massage: Bradenton's newest option for affordable, professional massage therapy.
  • The Babe Cave Studio: Handmade bohemian-style jewelry and essential oil accessories.
  • Gravity Henna Tattoos: Dedicated to beautiful, safe, quality henna designs in the Bradenton/Sarasota area.
  • Clothesline Tees: Offers custom screen printing and specializes in high-quality garments printed using super soft, eco-friendly inks.
  • Village of the Arts: Artists from the village will be selling their art and goods.

And of course, there's the music. This spring's lineup includes: Sam Robertson at 3 p.m.; Michael Snayd at 4 p.m.; Lady and Gentleman at 5:15 p.m.; The Western Sons at 6:30 p.m.; Dropin Pickup at 7:45 p.m.; and Good Graeff at 9 p.m.

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