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Taco Tour’s next adventure


08/08/18



We’re very happy to announce that, starting in 2019,   Manchester’s annual Hippo de Mayo Taco Challenge (most commonly known as the taco tour) will be organized by Intown Manchester.
Hippo started the taco tour in 2011 as a way for downtown restaurants to showcase their culinary chops and to bring thousands of people downtown. We did that. By 2018 there were more than 50 restaurants participating and more than 30,000 taco tourists made their way downtown to eat tacos on the first Thursday in May. Manchester is a great food town, and I hope we helped showcase that. 
It succeeded beyond our wildest dreams — so much so that it became too large for us to continue to organize. With the growth of the crowds the event had literally outgrown the sidewalks, and closing Elm Street seemed like the natural next step to keep the event growing and safe. 
We had always organized the event in a way that made it as easy as possible to put on. We handled the marketing and coordination of information (like who had what tacos). It was never an event that produced revenue for Hippo, but it did take hundreds of hours of staff time to organize. Having an organization like Intown and the city take over the event seemed like a natural next step. They have the ability to really blow the event up and use it as a springboard to do other great things downtown. The recent aldermanic discussions about closing Elm Street for more events is a great example of the possibilities. 
I’d like to personally thank all people (taco tourists) who joined us for the taco tour, the restaurants who participated over the years (even those who were very late in submitting their taco descriptions), Dos Equis and New Hampshire Distributors, Southern Wine and Spirits, Coca-Cola of Northern New England, Grace Limousines, the City of Manchester and my staff for going the extra mile in making the event happen. 
It’s been odd and amazing to watch the taco tour go from an idea I had to something that thousands of people do every year like it’s a normal thing — just head downtown and eat a taco from an Indian or Hungarian restaurant. 
We’re excited about this next step and excited to see what Intown does and excited to eat tacos at next year’s tour. Save me a place in line!
- Jody Reese





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