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Dade City has first Wings 'N Wheels

A new downtown event will be revving all day Saturday - the city's first Wings 'N Wheels includes a chicken-wing eating contest, motorcycles galore and rock bands.

Also, for the first time, beer will be served at a public festival.

"This is kind of a pioneer event in Dade City," said Sean Ashburn, owner of Sugarcreek gift store and a member of the Merchants' Association, which is putting on the event.

Beer can only be consumed in the "beer garden," a parking lot at Live Oak Avenue and Seventh Street. All ages can come to the festival, but beer consumption is limited to people 21 and older, of course.

The daylong party (10 a.m. until 6 p.m.) will span four blocks of downtown, roughly from Pasco Avenue to Live Oak Avenue, between Sixth and Eighth streets. Two city parking lots will be full of vendors offering biker-oriented memorabilia, and a bike stunt show will run throughout the day.

At opposite ends of the party will be two stages, one featuring a classic rock band and another for a battle of bands playing newer, harder music.

Ashburn said the musical genre is another breakthrough.

"All the events in town have kind of moderate music, kind of for everyone to enjoy," he said, "where this is going to be rock 'n' roll."

The event coincides with the final day of the Pasco County Fair, but Ashburn said the two festivals don't have much crossover.

"I think it's completely different demographics," he said. "We're hitting the 20-year-olds through retirement age, whereas the fair really seems to attract families. . . . They're not going to load their kids up on their Harley."

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