Seward County Community College will once again host the popular “Taste of Kansas” meal on Jan. 29, 2020, in the SCCC library. More than just a delicious, enormous potluck, the event offers participants an opportunity to savor the connections that create community.
“We introduced Taste of Kansas in 2019 as a campus inclusiveness and civility team project,” said inclusiveness team leader Rachel Coleman, SCCC Executive Director of PR and Marketing. “Our thought was, we’re all here in Kansas together, and we all make our community and our state the amazing place that it is. So having an event like this on Kansas Day was a natural fit.”
Kansas Day, the statehood anniversary, provides a great opportunity to revisit the state’s social justice pioneers, Coleman noted.
“People think about the Wizard of Oz and Amelia Earhart, but this state has been at the forefront of positive change led by grassroots people, ordinary people who just wanted a better life for themselves and the people they loved,” she said. “When you look at the list, it’s pretty amazing.” Among the “firsts” that originated in Kansas were women’s voting rights, child labor laws, regulations protecting bank customers, and of course, the famous Brown v. Board of Education case that led to Supreme Court rulings to desegregate schools.
At the Taste of Kansas event, posters will inform guests about the famous Kansans who showed social courage, but the main focus will be food. The inaugural event in 2019 brought nearly 200 guests to sample foods from 20 different countries, prepared by 50 campus team members, student groups, and friends of SCCC. From baklava to bierocks and a table filled with authentic Mexican regional cuisine, the event earned rave reviews from diners.
“We also made sure to include traditional Kansas favorites, like chili and cinnamon rolls, and chicken and noodles with mashed potatoes,” Coleman said. “We also had other regional dishes like chislic — from North Dakota — and Wisconsin macaroni and cheese.”
The event is free for students, team members, and friends of SCCC. To participate as a cook, please contact Phil Lee at 417-1126, Rachel Coleman at 417-1125, Annette Hackbarth Onson at 417-1106 or Alaina Rice at 417-1180. Students who need assistance with kitchen facilities or ingredients can request help.