Since 1992, the Taste of Wilkes cooking event has brought the Wilkes community together to enjoy favorite dishes prepared by faculty, staff and student chefs, and has become one of the most popular events on campus. It is also the University Staff Advisory Committee’s (USAC) largest fundraiser for the United Way of Wyoming Valley. This year’s event, held on Tuesday, Nov. 1 in the Ballroom of the Henry Student Center, had nearly 70 attendees and 13 chefs, and raised over $650.
In previous years, attendees piled their plate high with the delicious home-made fare and dined in the Ballroom, but because of safety measures, this year food was packaged in to-go containers and bags were supplied for take-out. The new format didn’t deter attendance, though. “We had a great turnout,” said Erica Acosta, Director of Diversity Initiatives at Wilkes and a member of both USAC and the Taste of Wilkes planning committee. “It was amazing to see everyone come out and support each other, and it was so nice to see everyone in person. We’ve really missed that,” she added.
The delicious dishes prepared this year included Roasted Pumpkin Soup by student Mia Hensil ‘23; Cheesesteak Stromboli by Joan Ford, library technician in the Farley Library; Mac & Cheeseburger by Justin Matus, associate professor in the Sidhu School of Business; Meatball Mania by Janet Cussatt, business operations specialist in the Procurement Office, and more. Attendees received a ballot to vote on their favorite dish, and the winner will be named the “top chef” of 2021 later this week.
For those who would like to participate in the basket and gift card raffle, there is still time. A Taste of Wilkes web store is available to view and bid on baskets, purchase special Taste of Wilkes aprons, and the Taste of Wilkes Home Edition Cookbook that was produced last year in lieu of an in-person event. View the store here – all raffle items will close on Friday morning Nov. 5 at 10:00 a.m.