BATAVIA — The 19th Annual Celebrate Agriculture Dinner is still about four months away, but those who want to go should get their tickets as soon as they can, a Genesee County Chamber of Commerce employee says.
The dinner, open to the public, is scheduled for 6 p.m. March 25 at the Alexander Fire Hall. A celebration of the county’s No, 1 industry, it includes a meal using locally produced foods prepared by Batavia Career and Technical Education Center Culinary Arts students, They are led by Chef Tracy Burgio, Culinary Arts instructor, and Denise Kaus, Culinary Arts teacher aide,
Tickets go on sale Monday at the Chamber of Commerce, 8276 Park Rd. Tickets are $30 each or a table of 10 may be purchased for $275. Only 400 tickets will be sold. For more information or to download the registrations flyer, visit the chamber’s Website www.geneseeny.com. For ticket information or questions, contact Director of Member Relations & Special Events Kelly Bermingham at the chamber at (585) 343-7440 or email@example.com.
“Historically, it sells out pretty quickly. Last year, we rebounded from COVID and it went really well. Last year was just about 300 (tickets sold). This is the second year we have partnered with the Culinary Arts program. Last year was the first year and it went great,” Bermingham said.
Bermingham said some of the students involved in last year’s meal preparation will be returning, while some have moved on.
“It‘s a perfect partnership with the students, the ag community,” she said. “The ag community donates all the food. They (Burgio, Kaus and the students) kind of prepare the menu based on what the donations are.”
Penna’s Catering of Elba, owned by Frank Penna III, catered the Celebrate Agriculture Dinner for years before scaling things back a little, Bermingham said.
“Even though agriculture is the No. 1 industry and it’s in the spotlight, having the kids prepare the food just brings it up another level of excitement,” she said. “We met with Chef Tracy, told her what our thoughts were and she just jumped on it and made it happen. The (chamber Agricultural) Committee didn’t really have to do much besides ask her. They took the ball and ran with it.”
In June, former chamber President Erik Fix and Bermingham, along with Molly Anderson from Torrey Farms, presented a check for $2,000 to the Batavia Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center’s Culinary Arts Club. The donation came from proceeds from last year’s Celebrate Agriculture dinner.
Aside from the chamber, the dinner’s coordinators are the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County, county Soil & Water Conservation District and county Farm Bureau.
Farms and businesses that donated locally grown food for the 2022 dinner included: Angry Bees Apiary, Dorman Farms, Fenton’s Produce, SJ Starowitz Farms,
Torrey Farms, Upstate Farms, Harrington Produce, Farm Fresh First Inc. Star of the West, Jeremy Neal Poverty Hill Farms.
Sponsorships, which help support agriculture educational events in Genesee County, are also available. Sponsors of the 2022 celebration included: Alleghany Farm Services, Arctic Refrigeration, Baskin Livestock, Inc., Carolina Eastern Crocker, CPL, New York State Sen. Edward Rath III, Farm Credit East, Farm Family Insurance, Fieldstone Private Wealth, Five Star Bank, Freed Maxick CPA, Growmark-FS, L&M Specialty Fabrications, LLC, Lamb Farms, Lawley, My-T Acres, National Grid, OXBO International, Perry Veterinary Clinic, Scott Adams Trucking, Tompkins Community Bank, Torrey Farms, Western New York Energy, LLC, Upstate Niagara Cooperative, Inc. William Kent, Inc. and Windy Acres Farm.
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