Wiregrass holds third annual Corks and Forks Fundraiser

April 30, 2013

Chef Randy DeCoudres
Executive Chef Randy DeCoudres
of Two Friends Café

Valdosta, GA—The third annual “Corks and Forks: An Evening of Classic Southern Cuisine” was held to raise money for the Wiregrass Georgia Technical Foundation South that provides financial support through scholarships, program equipment purchases, student assistance, classroom renovations, and much more. The college Foundation often steps in when state and federal dollars fall short so events such as this help tremendously in supporting the mission of the Foundation. This annual event raised more than $10,000. The Foundation staff and trustees are deeply appreciative of the community’s participation in this fundraiser.

The event began with a cooking demonstration from Savannah Technical College Culinary Program Coordinator, Executive Chef Jean Yves Vendeville. Chef Vendeville’s long career includes being named the 2012 Instructor of the Year for the Technical College System, awarded the ACF President's Medallion in February of 2012, named the Chef Educator of the Year by the Low Country Chapter of the ACF in 2012; and received a Lifetime Certification as an Executive Chef from the Chef Association of America. Chef Vendeville’s cooking demonstration was a combination of great food with advice on how to make one ingredient last for a week. He chose to demonstrate how to cook a chicken five ways, creating five different meals.

Following the cooking demonstration, local chefs served guests their exquisite dishes paired with their choice of wine. The chefs included Buddy Boswell, owner of Daily Dinners; Randy DeCoudres, executive chef at Two Friends Café; Keira Moritz, executive chef and owner of Steel Magnolia’s; Sue Cox, owner of 306 North; and Rick Van Hook, executive chef and culinary instructor for Wiregrass Georgia Tech. Students of the Wiregrass Georgia Tech culinary program assisted the chefs throughout the evening and began by assisting Chef Buddy Boswell in preparing appetizers for guests to enjoy as they listened to music performed by Frank Simons, Al Turner, and Will Curtis. Guests then made their way around to each chef and sampled their creations. Menu items for this year’s event again included ingredients from local growers such as Carter and Sons Produce as well as donations from Five Points Liquors, Johnson Distributing, Two Friends Café, Covington’s, Steel Magnolias, Art and Soul, Winn Dixie, Wal-Mart, and Sam’s Club. Other sponsors included Paula and Larry Carter, Inland Seafood, Martin Ray Vineyards, Quality Wine, and US Foods. The Foundation is grateful to the sponsors and the participants for their contributions. Special thanks also go to the Corks and Forks planning committee which included Larry and Paula Carter, Ben and LaVonne Copeland, Chef Sue Cox, Angela Crance, Chef Randy DeCoudres, Beth DeLoach-Meeks, Florence Staten, Chef Rick Van Hook, and Gus Walters.

For more information on how you can help support the Foundation and its mission, contact Dr. Penelope Schmidt at penelope.schmidt@wiregrass.edu or 229-293-6190.

Peggy and Mayor John Gayle, Gail and Walter HobgoodPeggy and Mayor John Gayle, Gail and Walter Hobgood

Chef Jean Yves Vandeville
Savannah Technical College
Executive Chef Jean Yves Vendeville