With the holiday season upon us we are reminded of the gift of giving. Cura’s role in successful fund-raising events and philanthropy continue to be at the core when it comes to supporting our senior living and acute care clients’ development and gift planning program efforts.
When organizing benefit dinners, themed events, holiday and other special gatherings, one of the most important items to consider is the food. Food can make or break your event, and often is the one memory that will influence your potential donors to think about attending your next fundraiser.
In addition to being the specialist in senior living and acute care dining, Cura is the caterer of choice for charitable and special events. Their culinary teams will promise a successful event with highly -skilled certified executive chefs who prepare scratch foods – rivaling some of the nation’s top restaurants!
Delightful and attentive servers and creative catering and marketing managers will also offer new ideas, innovative menus, and trending ways to merchandise and present your food! The Cura team will not only impress your guests, but will encourage them to attend future events, make donations…and oh did I say, they will bring friends!
Faith, Field and Feast is an annual fall event held by the Sisters of St. Joseph in Baden, Pa., to raise funds that support the Sisters’ community, including its extensive gardens. This year, Cura planned and executed the $165 per person dinner, sourcing hyperlocal ingredients from those gardens!
In addition to the Sisters’ gardens, the event also proceeds the apiary, henhouse, as well as our Sister St. Mark Garden Fund partners which donate to many of the area’s food banks.
“We will make a monetary donation as well as a donation of our time to the fundraiser,” says Jon Norris, district manager for Cura. For the dinner, he and Foodservice Director Fred Blosat planned the menu, while Dennis Rivera, regional culinary chef, prepped and supervised the cooking.
A delicious smoked brisket of beef with a honey BBQ sauce drizzle was one of the main courses. The meat was procured from Milk House Meats, a local butcher in Beaver Falls, PA. The honey used was sourced from Sister Lyn Szymkiewicz’s beehive! Guests could also select from a grilled marinated pork tenderloin (Milk House Meats) with fresh apple chutney made from apples freshly picked from the property’s orchard! A pan-seared duck breast with orange pan sauce, asparagus, and leek risotto was also served. Fingerling potatoes and julienne vegetables accompanied these delicious menu items!
Another garden-fresh selection was a crisp arugula salad with red beets, tomatoes, and fresh herbs – homegrown in the Mother House Twin Trinity Garden. You can’t get any more local than this!
Although the variety of serving styles amidst COVID has been a challenge for Cura managed communities, Cura teams have successfully earned praise for creating events that encourage donors to attend safely! One event in particular had to pivot on a large scale: the annual multicourse meal to celebrate resident donors to the Homestead Village (Lancaster, PA) endowment fund.
“This was the first year we had decided to make the culinary part of it the entertainment and revolve the whole experience around an upscale culinary experience,” says Lindsey Clinton, general manager and executive chef says. She also adds that planning started before the pandemic hit!
That meant a meal designed for a showy tableside experience had to be packed up and delivered to about 50 residents at home, while a much smaller group dined inside. Clinton and her team—supplemented with extra chefs and cooks from other nearby Cura communities—who were able to deliver in terms of the dining experience!
The menu included upscale dishes like confit spiced Snake River Farms Kurobuta pork belly with vanilla-infused apple slaw and red wine reduction; pan-roasted quail with cinnamon-tawny port drunken cherries; diver scallops with celery root puree; foie gras with polenta cake and a pear-fig pavlova and a cheese course for dessert.
This pavlova with vanilla bean Bavarian cream and poached pears with black figs was a chance for Lindsey Clinton to show off her culinary chops at the annual endowment fund dinner!
Hospitals also rely on Cura to cater some of their most important milestones! St. Clair Health in Pittsburgh, PA, recently celebrated the biggest expansion project in 70 years! Cura catered the food for the grand opening of the Dunlap Family Outpatient Center, a $125 million, state-of-the-art center that houses comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic outpatient services, including the new Café Kara managed by Cura!
Cura’s team catered the kickoff event for the center where they impressed medical staff and visitors with a menu of options including yogurt parfaits, an assortment of bagels, scones and other delicious pastries provided by our in-house baker Jackie!
Other tempting items at the cafe include a build your own action deli, hot sandwiches on flatbreads, paninis such as mozzarella and eggplant as well as specialty made-to-order salads such as the wedge, Greek, chopped and hot roasted salmon are just a few of what the team menus from team served stations!
For successful outcomes, select Cura for your next fundraising or special event! Your dining experience will always be exceeded and memorable…!