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Ask Eddie: Tell us about the Downtown Culinary District

Q: What is the Downtown Culinary District and what is its purpose?

A: Downtown Harrisonburg and the surrounding County have a rich and diverse agriculture and food-related heritage, culture, and economy. Many large food-related businesses, including City Exchange, Wetsel Seed, Cassco Ice, Rocco Feeds, and Shenandoah’s Pride, started in Harrisonburg and made a national impact on the food industry.

Wetsel Seed Company, Currently Union Station. Image Courtesy “Tim” via Flickr.

The food-related tradition continues with numerous and varied businesses and culinary activities. Downtown currently has more than 30 unique restaurants and eateries; more than 15 food-related businesses; more than 5 food-related events; and approximately 5 food and beverage production businesses.

Downtown Harrisonburg is developing the reputation as the regional dining destination, with multiple awards recognizing the quality and diversity of our restaurants and eateries. As the trend toward foodie and culinary interests grows, downtown Harrisonburg is positioned well to market our attractions.

food in the friendly city

With the leadership of HDR and support of Harrisonburg Tourism, the Downtown Dining Alliance, the Harrisonburg Farmers Market, and Friendly City Food Co-op, on January 28 the Harrisonburg city council passed a resolution creating a Downtown Culinary District. The district will be promoted with the goal of attracting and retaining businesses and customers who value food-related experiences and products.

Eddie Bumbaugh

Eddie Bumbaugh is the Executive Director for Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance.


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