–by Jennifer Ruple

Southern hospitality was at its finest during the Penta Career Center’s 10th Annual Scholarship Dinner and Silent Auction held on Dec. 6 in the Commons area on the Penta campus, 9301 Buck Rd. in Perrysburg Township.

Senior Angela Elliott (right) and junior Moriyah Clint (middle) put the finishing touches on Southern Style Macaroni and Cheese made with smoked white cheddar cheese and bacon while junior Kaleb Grebenik prepares andouille sausage patties for Penta Career Center’s 10th Annual Scholarship Dinner and Silent Auction.

Fifty-three students from Penta’s three culinary arts labs, plus 20 students who participate in the sophomore exploratory program, hosted the event and prepared gourmet food for 400 guests around the theme, “Bring on the Southern Charm.”

Three gourmet food stations featured appetizers, entrees and desserts typically found in the Southern United States. Some of the entrees served were Pulled Pork Stuffed Cornbread Muffins; Seafood Gumbo; Shrimp and Grits; Pecan Crusted Catfish; and Sweet Tea Ham with Red Eye Gravy Jam. Desserts included Georgia Peach Cobbler, Cherry Cola Chocolate Cake, Chess Pie with Blueberries, and Pecan Pralines.

Sophmores Kennedy Stanford and Abbey Mackay weigh dough balls which will become garlic dinner rolls.
Tyler Shultz uses an immersion blender to prepare a pineapple compote to top a cake.

Popular dishes among guests were Southern Style Macaroni and Cheese and Corn Pudding.

The event raised over $30,000 for the following awards for Penta students: Culinary Scholarship, Hirzel Family Scholarship and Penta’s General Scholarship Fund. The scholarships assist students with either post-secondary tuition or tools.

Junior Ty Zieroff works on Pecan Pralines. The Pralines were just one of the many desserts students prepared for guests.
Culinary Level 1 instructor Chef Sarah Sadlier displays cups of corn souffle, carrot cake, peach cobbler and cornbread.

Fred LeFebvre from News Radio 1370 WSPD served as the emcee and David Carpenter, local musician and Penta instructor, provided the entertainment.

Each guest received a pink Himalayan salt shaker as a party favor for good health in the new year.