Culinary program hosts summer BBQ restaurant for homecoming week

Story by Ellison Norton, Staff Writer

The East Meck culinary program will hold their traditional summer BBQ-themed restaurant Wednesday, Sept. 15. This event has often taken place during homecoming week.

A three-course meal with vegan options will be served, with the entree choices being pulled pork, pulled chicken and vegan pulled jackfruit. The appetizer will be a watermelon salad. Side dishes will include coleslaw, vegan coleslaw, mac and cheese, vegan mac and cheese, corn bread and vegan cornbread. For dessert, strawberry shortcake and vegan strawberry shortcake will be available. 

A regular BBQ plate with a choice of meat, a side and dessert costs $10. Vegan plates give you the same options but bring the total to $12.00 a plate. The meals will be served during the five lunches.  

The BBQ is a full student-led and operated program. Students are in charge of creating the menu, purchasing ingredients, cooking and presenting to their customers. Customers include the East Meck faculty, student’s families and even the outside community.

 “It’s a complete restaurant experience for the students and the facility run right out of East,” said Stanley Weaver, one of the culinary teachers at East Meck. 

The BBQ isn’t the only restaurant East Meck runs. Typically, a new menu is created every few weeks with different themes. Along with the restaurant, each food item is also priced by the students. It gives them a chance to gain a profit back from their expenses on groceries, and extra for the culinary booster.

 “I love how funding for the program isn’t connected straight through CMS,” Weaver said. “We have our own money and can utilize it however we deem fit.”

 Profits not only allow for the restaurant to continue, but to upgrade. This program allows students to gain the experience of a real world job, Weaver said, giving them time management skills, collaboration skills, importance of value, and cooking skills.