An epic burger by 1818 Chophouse.ALTON - It’s Epic Food Month, and with over 60 local restaurants participating, you have plenty of epic foods to choose from.

The month is divided into Epic Burger Week, Epic Taco Week, Epic Sandwich Week and Epic Ice Cream Week. Epic Food Month is sponsored by the Great Rivers & Routes tourism bureau.

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“It’s just a chance for us to highlight our local business owners and encourage people to travel to the region for food,” Cory Jobe, the president of the bureau, said. “That is one of the many reasons people come to our region, our craft spirits and our great food scene throughout our six-county region.”

Jobe says that the bureau office has been sampling burgers all week for Epic Burger Week, in which 25 featured restaurants participated. Even though Epic Burger Week is coming to an end, there are still three more weeks of great eats that will satisfy any foodie.

The month is focused on local businesses, but one of its goals is to bring out-of-towners to the area. Jobe explains that locally-owned restaurants and other businesses are “the backbone of our tourism industry and hospitality industry.”

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“If we didn’t have our local small business community with our shops and restaurant options and pubs and bars and local distilleries and breweries, we wouldn’t have a tourism industry,” he added.

You can see a full list of participating restaurants here.

The month will end, but the eating doesn’t stop. From July 7–16, the Great Rivers & Routes tourism bureau will also sponsor All Star Restaurant Weeks in both Alton and Collinsville.

As Jobe points out, Epic Food Month and other tourism events are all about celebrating the people in the Riverbend area who keep it alive.

“This is just one way that we like to highlight our small business owners, our local entrepreneurs who are producing an amazing product every day,” Jobe said.

You can follow the Great Rivers & Routes website and social media pages for updates on restaurants and future events.

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