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Campus club to host benefit dinner to raise money for local food pantries

Written by Kasey Myers
Emmy Runyan and Sierra Ditto begin preparation for the creamy tomato soup.

Emmy Runyan and Sierra Ditto begin preparation for the creamy tomato soup.

The Bluffton University Nutrition Association (BUNA) will host the annual Harvest Dinner Friday, Nov. 11, to raise money for food pantries in Bluffton and Lima.

“It’s gonna be a great night of music, five delicious soups, great desserts, fair trade coffee, bread and good company,” said Mackenzie Butler, president of BUNA. Butler encourages students and community members to attend the dinner Friday evening for an amazing, homemade meal.

The menu for the event includes pumpkin curry, ham and bean soup, creamy tomato soup, potato soup, and beef and veggie soup. There will also be Olive Garden breadsticks, cornbread and Panera loaf bread. Patrons can also enjoy coffee and their choice of chocolate cake with coffee icing, pumpkin crunch cake or apple crisp. Gluten and dairy free options will be available for those with dietary restrictions. Vegetarian selections will be offered as well.

Pumpkin crunch cakes and other desserts were prepared in Berky Hall's kitchen and will be transported to the First Mennonite Church in Bluffton before the dinner Friday, November 11th.

Pumpkin crunch cakes and other desserts were prepared in Berky Hall’s kitchen and will be transported to the First Mennonite Church in Bluffton before the dinner Friday, November 11th.

Handmade soup bowls will also be available for additional donation to the pantries courtesy of the ceramics class here at Bluffton.

In the past the benefit dinner had been structured as a spaghetti supper, but last year it was reformed to feature homemade soups, breads and desserts, bringing in even more patrons than past fundraising efforts. Between 300 and 400 people attended the dinner last year and donated. The restructured fundraiser was able to raise $2,101.53 and collect 261 canned goods last year.

“I’m definitely not running the show by myself. This is a team effort and would definitely not be possible without everyone helping out,” said Butler.  She cited the help of BUNA members, the food service management class on campus and the ceramics class.

"I treat the Harvest Dinner like a three credit class," explained Mackenzie Butler, President of BUNA. Butler coordinated the efforts of BUNA, the food service management class, the ceramics class and various community efforts to make the dinner possible.

“I treat the Harvest Dinner like a three credit class,” explained Mackenzie Butler, President of BUNA. Butler coordinated the efforts of BUNA, the food service management class, the ceramics class and various community efforts to make the dinner possible.

Butler also explained that at least twelve locally connected businesses and organizations have donated their resources to make the fundraiser possible.

The event will be held at the First Mennonite Church in Bluffton between 5:00 pm and 7:00 pm. Those who wish to attend the dinner should bring either a monetary donation, or non-perishable food items in exchange for their meal.

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Kasey Myers

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