More than 800 East Texans made time for "the good stuff" Thursday night in Lufkin. Brookshire Brothers' 2nd Annual Fresh Harvest Cooking Show at the Pitser Garrison Civic Center was a sell out - delivering an entertaining evening chock full of food, prizes, and freebies.
The real winners were the five community groups that partnered with the Lufkin-based grocery chain to sell the show tickets. Company Public Relations Director Gloria McDonald adds, "We'll write checks to the Top Ladies of Distinction, Lufkin Host Lions Club, St. Cyprian's School, Trout Primary PTK, and the Junior League of Lufkin for the tickets they sold. The top two sellers will also get the proceeds from the tickets sold in our Brookshire Brothers stores. Those non-profits, in turn, can use the funds to further the 'good stuff' they do in the community."
For two hours, Chef Tiffany Collins and Clear Channel Radio's Danny Merrell kept the crowd stirred up with their fast-paced dialogue. Never missing a beat, the professional chef and her quick-witted side-kick created 15 delicious dishes. From the Confetti Shrimp to the Hot Ham and Cheese Round, the recipes were so easy to follow the pair invited folks in the audience to come on stage to help.
Temple-Inland's Tom Burr "stole the show" when he helped stir a very thick brownie batter to the tune of Macho Man. Another guest figured out "what was in the box" sitting on the stage and went home with a $2400.00 projection television set given by SuddenLink.
In true television "cooking show" style, the crowd was enthusiastic and played off of every opportunity to get involved. A live band on stage, led by Angelina College's Larry Greer, added to the festive atmosphere.
Brookshire Brothers Marketing Director Bruce Bryant said, "We were thrilled but a little overwhelmed by the crowd's interest. Consequently we were challenged to get our guests through our food and vendor displays quickly. We'll streamline that aspect of the show to ensure the Fresh Harvest Cooking Show becomes a staple in their holiday plans!"
From the floral decorations to the convenience and grocery products advertised by the participating vendors, it was a night to remember. Members of the audience took home recipe books that included $50 in coupons for ingredients in the evening's dishes. General Mills, Kraft, Fresh Express, Angus Pride, Tony Chachere's, and Swift Premium also loaded up show-goers with samples to go home and try.
As she left Thursday night, one guest remarked, "It was the best $10 I ever spent. Besides the food and the fun, the show gave me some great ideas for the holidays. Bring 'em on 'cause I'm ready."
Source: Press Release from Gloria McDonald, Director of Public Relations, Brookshire Brothers, Inc.