Hope College has won a third place award in the 25th annual Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards Contest sponsored by the National Association of College & University Food Services (NACUFS).
Hope was honored in the "Small School" section in
the "Residence Hall Dining Special Event-Theme Dinner"
competition. The award was presented during the
association's 40th national conference, held in Anaheim,
Calif., on Tuesday-Saturday, July 7-11.
Hope was recognized for its "Florida Citrus Beach
Blast," held in the college's Phelps Hall dining hall in
March, about a week before the start of Hope's spring break.
The "Florida Citrus Beach Blast" featured food,
activities and decorations revolving around a Florida theme.
The meal included fried shrimp, orange cake and a meatball
kabob with Florida citrus sauce; and a "beach hut" built in
the hall featured grills with grouper sandwiches. Rented
ficus trees were adorned with oranges; other decorations
included giant seahorses, trees and dolphins made from
balloons; one of the chefs sculpted an alligator and
flamingo from ice. Students won prizes in a sandcastle-
building contest staged on the main floor, or in a "velcro
Supported by the Florida Citrus Council and
presented annually, the dinner was part of a monthly series
of major themed dinners that the college's food service
presents between September and April. According to Bob Van
Heukelom, director of dining services at Hope, the series is
part of an effort to keep mealtime interesting for a
clientele that might visit as many as 21 times a week.
"As good a job as we do, and I think we do a
better job than anybody as far as having quality and variety
goes--dining on-campus can become monotonous for students,"
The other monthly events include an "Oktoberfest"
and dinners with Thanksgiving and Christmas themes. Van
Heukelom noted that the monthly bashes are complemented with
smaller weekly "pace changers" as well, such as a dinner
featuring a baked potato bar.
The Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards Contest
presented prizes in seven major categories, including not
only special theme dinners but topics such as "Residence
Hall Dining Standard Menu" and "Catering Special Event."
Each school competed by size: small, medium or large. In
addition to offering first, second and third prizes within
each size grouping for all seven categories, the contest
named a grand prize winner for each of the seven categories.
A total of 126 entries were submitted. There were
49 award winners.
The contest, which draws entries from NACUFS-
member institutions throughout the United States as well as
abroad, was created to promote creativity and sound
nutrition in the areas of food presentation, menu variety
and merchandising. The event is named for Loyal E. Horton,
a former NACUFS president and founding member of the
NACUFS is the only higher education association in
the United States devoted exclusively to promoting the
highest quality of food service at member institutions.
NACUFS supports its institutional and industry members with
education, training, technical assistance, industry
information, scholarships and research support.