Just a week to go before the premier event of the Fall in Columbus.

The eighth annual “Taste of Columbus” will be next Sunday to mark Columbus Day weekend. The event this year supports the Chamber Area of Commerce and the Platte Valley Literacy Association.

Tickets for this year’s event are available at the Chamber office on 33rd Avenue or online at http://www.thecolumbuspage.com">www.thecolumbuspage.com, by clicking on the Events button.

Advance tickets are being sold through Friday at 5 p.m. for $30, while tickets at the door will be $45.

That ticket price does include all the food and drink sampling that you can fit in.

Again, a full slate of food vendors will be on hand for the event.

These businesses are, of course, the heart of the event.

Among those on-hand for this year will be Applebee’s, Cargill Meat Solutions, Columbus Community Hospital, Country Shadows, Elks Country Club, Gambino’s Pizza/Baby Huey’s BBQ, Hy-Vee, New World Inn, Quizno’s, Subway, Super Saver, Traditions Inn, Uptown Brewery, Wal-Mart, and Wunderlich's Catering.

Most of these vendors were at the event last year, and anyone who attended knows what an outstanding job they all did.

The presentation and food alike were just phenomenal. I know I can’t wait to pick up a fork and start sampling again this year.

The Royal Auction Committee has put together another wonderful list of select items.

You’ll find a truly unique opportunity to name a city street in the new Bradshaw Place subdivision donated by NeighborWorks Northeast Nebraska and the City of Columbus.

There are wonderful trips to New York City and Northern California. NASCAR fans can enjoy a ride-along and pit passes to a race of their choice.

Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman is hosting a dinner in the governor’s residence.

Foreman Supply is donating a storage shed, and who doesn’t need more storage? And in the spirit of the evening, the auction includes a variety of opportunities to share some food and drink with your friends in various settings.

Our Silent Auction Committee, headed by Jim and Connie Hellbusch, also has been busy.

They’ve recruited a great team that has collected a selection of silent auction items that will certainly keep attendees busy shopping for the first couple hours of the evening.

I think it’s the best response we’ve had to the silent auction request in the eight years of Taste of Columbus.

I can guarantee you that Taste of Columbus 2008 will be a special evening, full of good food, good drink and good friends.

We hope you’ll join us for a wonderful celebration. Contact the chamber office to reserve those tickets today.

K.C. Belitz is president of the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce