Food for thought


Culinary Extravaganza provides food, empowerment for students and community
By Donovan Sheehan
Campus Life Editor
CulEx2015-invitation-1On Sunday, Sept. 20, the Schoolcraft College Foundation will be hosting their annual Culinary Extravaganza: a celebration of food and drink, featuring offerings from both culinary students and restaurants from throughout southeast Michigan. The event is scheduled from 2 to 5 p.m inside the VisTaTech Center and tickets are priced at $60 with $20 going towards a charitable donation. The Foundation has high hopes for this year’s event.
“It is a strolling event where guests can sample all that is presented to their heart’s content,” said Beth Kohler, Director of Development for Schoolcraft College. “The DiPonio room will be filled with restaurants and beverage establishments, as well as the Main Street hallway and the Waterman wing near Henry’s.”
The Extravaganza has been a Schoolcraft tradition for over twenty years, bringing restaurants from across the Metro Detroit area together on Schoolcraft’s own campus. “Last year we had a total of 50 booths,” said Kohler. “[This year] over 75 restaurants have been personally invited.”
The restaurants in attendance, located throughout the Metro Detroit area, will be bringing their best dishes to Schoolcraft in order to get involved with the community and to engage in a little friendly competition. Participants this year include: 2 Unique Caterers & Event Planners from Royal Oak, Big Rock Chophouse from Birmingham, Ugly Dog Distillery from Chelsea and many more. A complete listing of confirmed participants can be found at
Schoolcraft’s Culinary Program—as well as two of its very own establishments, Henry’s and Main Street Cafe—will also be participating, presenting their own dishes alongside professional chefs from some of the best restaurants in the Metro Detroit area.
“We’re always excited to come to Schoolcraft,” said Tony Yaquinto, a representative from Compari’s on the Park, another restaurant invited to the event. “Seeing familiar faces makes us keep on going, because the same people always come, year after year.”
The Extravaganza is also a way for the Schoolcraft College Foundation to continue to assist students in its fundraising efforts.
Since its creation over 20 years ago, the Extravaganza has “grown into the Foundation’s premier fundraising event,” said Kohler, “raising a net of over $60,000 for the Culinary Program and for scholarships, grants and enhanced educational opportunities.”
The Schoolcraft College Foundation is the college’s partner non-profit corporation, founded in 1966, which supports college programs and activities by raising money, dealing with businesses and private organizations. Along with promoting Schoolcraft as part of the local community.
The management of this year’s Extravaganza is made up of a committee of Foundation members: Kris Mayer, President-Elect of the Foundation’s Board of Governors; Mary Holaly, Coordinator of Events and Scholarships and Sheri Frader, the Executive Assistant Marketing and Advancement Coordinator.
Besides eating and drinking, those attending the Extravaganza will also get to take place in a raffle drawing after 4 p.m. Raffle tickets can be purchased before the event or at the door, and prizes include cash of up to $1,500 for the grand prize, as well as dinners for two at Schoolcraft’s American Harvest. There will also be a silent auction available for guests to bid on some of the items presented.
To purchase tickets online go to or call 734-462-4518 for more information.
The Foundation is also accepting donations for the Culinary Program for those who cannot attend the event, but would still like to contribute.
If you can attend the event, expect an afternoon spent grazing your way through a delectable fundraiser, which not only tastes good but also gives back to Schoolcraft students and the community.
Pullout box:
2015 Culinary Extravaganza
Sunday, Sept. 20
2 to 5 p.m.
VisTaTech Center
18600 Haggerty Road, Livonia MI 48152-2696