What is Taste of Black STL?
The Taste of Black STL is a multi-sensory food experience based in event located in downtown St. Louis. When you support the Taste of Black STL, you help our community thrive! Held since 2018, St. Louis's finest in eats and entertainment, families and friends, gather at this event for this admission FREE festival featuring black owned 100 + foods, retail, and informational Vendors from Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit and St. Louis, along with a main stage, DJ's, Local Artists performances, Chef Battle, Children's Area and “Fill - A - Truck” a community charity drive. Plus, did we mention the event is free to attend!
When is Taste of Black STL?
Taste of Black STL is held the 2nd weekend in September each year. In 2023, dates are Friday September 8th from 12:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. Saturday, September 9th from 12:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. and Sunday, September 10th from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Where is the Taste of Black STL?
The event takes place in downtown St. Louis at Poelker/ Kaufmann Park (at Soldier's Memorial Plaza). See our Map for a floor plan of the event!
Is there an admission fee?
The Taste of Black STL admission is Free, and we encourage you to shop with the vendors.
Where should I park?
Feel free to locate various parking opportunities on surrounding streets, lots, and parking garages. Be sure not to park at reserved meters or in "no parking" areas.
NOTE: Parking is available at meters downtown, which are free of charge on Sunday only. Taste of Black STL is unable to reimburse parking violations.
How much is the food? How big are the serving sizes?
All the food at the Taste of Black STL is priced affordable by the vendors with moderate to generous portions sizes.
Will I need a wristband for Alcohol purchases? there be alcohol sold?
Yes. Please visit any beer or liquor booth throughout the festival, show your identification, and purchase a $2 wristband for the day. This ensures shorter lines at alcohol booths, since you will have already shown proof of your age.
How do I pay for food and beverages?
Payment varies between each vendor. Some take cash, some take cards, and some take both!
What is the community charity event?
Yes. Fill – A - Truck” this year’s charity initiative in partners with EVERYBODY EATS INC 501(c)(3). We are collecting donations from attendees, vendors, and surrounding business to fill an entire 53’ foot semi-truck with the basic things such as toilet paper, personal care items, winter clothing, and bedding. These items can have a profound impact for those who are in need. The truck donations will be delivered to varies homeless shelters for woman, men, and children around the Holidays.
If you would rather just donate cash, please see our Cash Donations page. Every dollar that is donated will go directly to buy needed items with absolutely no administrative costs.
General Event Guidelines:
Entering this event constitutes implied consent of each eventgoer to Taste of Black STL's use of his/her image and/or likeness incidental to any photographic, digital or video use, publication, display, transmission or recording of the event. No unauthorized vendors, solicitations, handbills, sampling, giveaways, etc. Alcoholic beverages may not be taken in or out of entrances. Taste of Black STL reserves the right to deny entry or remove anyone from the event in violation of these policies.
How many people attend?
Taste of Black STL is free and open to the public. In the past years over 80,000 people have come over the course of the whole weekend.
Does the city of St. Louis put on this event?
No. The city simply supplies permits which the event and vendors pay for. No tax dollars go toward Taste of Black STL.
Who puts on this event?
The Taste of Black STL is organization that enriches our community by bringing together people, businesses and charities.
Can I bring my pet?
We ask that you do not bring pets; service animals are always allowed. Due to temperature, very hot pavement and very large and loud crowds; we do not allow pets for their safety and that of all our guests.
Can I bring my own cooler to the Taste of Black STL?
No coolers are allowed onto festival grounds. If you have specific dietary needs or other concerns, we recommend bringing a small, soft-sided lunchbox-style container with you. Large, hard-sided coolers will not be allowed into the grounds. Do not bring tents to the festival grounds. They block the view and make it hard for others to enjoy the entertainment and festivities. Lawn chairs are welcome. Weapons of any kind and firearms are strictly prohibited. Anyone bringing prohibited items into festival grounds will be asked to leave immediately and may be refused re-entry. For everyone's safety, please do not bring glass containers with you. In compliance with our liquor license, as well as state and municipal law, no outside alcohol is allowed. No one under the legal drinking age of 21 years old is allowed to drink at Taste of Black STL All individuals appearing to be under the age of 40 years old may be asked for a valid photo ID. Individual, sealed bottles of water are allowed to be carried in (maximum 6 bottles).
How are the Vendors selected?
Businesses at the Taste of Black STL voluntary participants and are permitted to sell at Taste of Black STL on an application basis.
Does Taste of Black STL take a percentage of what the Businesses earn?
No! Businesses pay a flat fee to participate in Taste of Black STL and keep what they make during the weekend.
Can I perform, protest, demonstrate and/or hand out literature or promotional items at the Taste of Black STL?
Street performers, musicians, artists, mascots, vendors, and nonprofit groups are not permitted at Poelker/ Kaufmann or surrounding blocks during the Taste of Black STL unless contracted with Taste of Black STL per our Street Use Permit.