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School of Hospitality Students Provide Catering for Harvest Festival


Students enrolled in majors offered by Pennsylvania College of Technology’s School of Hospitality will take their skills on the road, providing catering services at Hunt Country Vineyards’ Gourmet Harvest Festival in Branchport, N.Y., on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1.

Participating students are enrolled in a Catering course at Penn College. They have planned a made-to-order gourmet menu that pairs well with Hunt Country wines for the event, which will be held near Keuka Lake in the Finger Lakes region of New York.

Before meeting the challenge of cooking for the festival’s attendees, students plan the menu and purchase supplies, including an order to the School of Hospitality’s Principles of Quantity Baking class which operates like a retail bakery for all of the baked goods that will be served that weekend, and an order to the Meat and Seafood Fabrication class, which will prepare bratwurst for the event. They also organize and pack all of the equipment they will need for the weekend.

Participating students are Michael L. Clinger, Northampton; David L. Davis, Kingston; Nicoya L. Frey, Montoursville; Alyssa J. Giedroc, Howard; Lynzi K. Green, Port Matilda; Christopher R. Grove, Linden; Amy E. Harris, South Waverly; Adam J. Krasley, Spring City; Steven C. Pont, Portland, Conn.; Yolanda T. Rauwendaal, Auburn, Calif.; and Steven G. Smith, Sayre.

The students will be accompanied by Chef Michael J. Ditchfield, instructor of hospitality management/culinary arts, who teaches the Catering course; and Chef Paul E. Mach, assistant professor of hospitality management/culinary arts. Mach, who has been part of the festival since its inception 25 years ago, will offer cooking demonstrations.

The students will serve food from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sept. 30 and from noon to 6 p.m. on Oct. 1.

Their menu features roasted poblano and potato soup, andouille sausage and bratwurst, pulled pork barbecue sandwiches with apple horseradish slaw, grilled Caesar chicken sandwich with sun-dried tomato pesto, braised beef with whole wheat pasta, the Foxy Lady burger, chocolate decadence cake, Foxy Lady ice cream with macerated apples, and duck ham wraps.

“The menu ingredients comprise as much fresh, local and regional food as we could acquire,” Ditchfield said. “The Hunts believe in the “Buy Fresh Buy Local” concept. They are slowly making a shift to be one of the few organic Finger Lakes wineries.”

For more information regarding the Gourmet Harvest Festival, visit the vineyard’s Web site.

For more information about the academic programs offered by the School of Hospitality, call (570) 327-4505, or send e-mail .

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