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Students to Cook Samples for Growers’ ‘Customer Appreciation Day’

Students in a Catering course at Pennsylvania College of Technology will offer cooking demonstrations – and free samples – at the Williamsport Growers Market’s annual “Customer Appreciation Day” on Sept. 19.

The students will prepare a variety of recipes using fresh, local ingredients donated by the market’s vendors. They’ll serve samples beginning at 8 a.m. – when the market opens – and continue until noon (or until the samples run out).

“It’s the farmers saying thanks to the local customers for their patronage and support throughout the year, with Penn College preparing food from the products they’ve donated,” explained Michael J. Ditchfield, instructor of hospitality management/culinary arts, who teaches the Catering class.

Pennsylvania College of Technology student Brianna R. Helmick, who graduated in May, serves egg rolls made with fresh, vendor-donated ingredients at the Williamsport Growers Market. Penn College hospitality students will return to the market for Customer Appreciation Day on Sept. 19.
Pennsylvania College of Technology student Brianna R. Helmick, who graduated in May, serves egg rolls made with fresh, vendor-donated ingredients at the Williamsport Growers Market. Penn College hospitality students will return to the market for Customer Appreciation Day on Sept. 19.

In addition to experience in preparing and executing an off-site catering event (planning a menu, arranging equipment for travel and the like), the annual visit to the Growers Market provides a valuable opportunity for the students to learn about sustainable food practices and interact directly with local growers who use those methods.

Participating students are Alivia L. Bollock, of Gaines; Sarah A. Brunski, of Mount Holly Springs; Sarah B. Fiedler, of Lock Haven; Jaclyn C. Gregg, of Warriors Mark; Katlyn J. Hackling, of Williamsport; Cy C. Heller, of Milton; Ethan B. Hinkel, of Muncy; Randall C. Janowitz, of Westminster, Md.; Nitoshia M. Kulish, of Coal Township; Vincent M. Mass, of Staten Island, N.Y.; Lyndsay E. Maynard, of Fleetwood; Alyssa J. Morales, of Williamsport; Andrew M. Scheitle, of Chambersburg; Jacob O. Spencer, of Millersville; and Robert E. Wood, of Montoursville.

The Williamsport Growers Market is open every Saturday in the parking lot between Hepburn Street, Pine Street and Little League Boulevard. Hours through the end of November are 8 a.m.-1 p.m. In winter, when the vendors move into a heated tent, hours are 9 a.m.-noon.

Products available in-season include vegetables, fruits, meats, eggs, dairy products, baked goods, coffee, cooking oils, dog biscuits, soils, pottery, bags and covers, children’s clothing, yarns and honey.

The School of Business & Hospitality at Penn College is a longtime supporter of Pennsylvania’s Buy Fresh Buy Local initiative. The school’s Le Jeune Chef Restaurant, a learning lab for students in related majors, uses locally sourced products.

In addition to the Growers Market, the Catering class will prepare food this fall at a home Penn State football game in Beaver Stadium, among other events.

To learn more about hospitality majors at the college, call 570-327-4505.

For information about Penn College, a national leader in applied technology education, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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