VALPARAISO | Tri Kappa welcomed more than a thousand guests Thursday night into a taste bud extravaganza to raise funds for college scholarships. Forty-one area restaurants put their best quiche and panini forward for Taste of Valparaiso in the Porter County Expo Center.
Taste of Valparaiso also features a silent auction of everything from sports tickets to original art to a ready made “date night basket.” New this year were the central red tables for sponsors, the private dining in the Red Ticket Lounge, and the Wine Pull with a wide range of wines.
Tri Kappa is a philanthropic organization made up entirely of Indiana women. The Valparaiso chapter started in 1906 and exists solely to support the community. Last year they gave away $16,000 in scholarships, in addition to giving sizable donations to the YMCA, the Boys & Girls Clubs, and several other groups.
Susan Brychell, co-chair of Taste of Valparaiso, was hoping to raise more money for scholarships this year.
“Fifty-eight amazing kids applied for scholarships," noted Kay Frataccia, a Tri Kappa officer. "We really need more scholarships because they are all great kids. That is why Taste of Valparaiso is such a great event. All the money goes right back to the community.”
Between greetings and hugs, past Tri Kappa President Karen Kennedy summed it all up, “Everybody loves Taste of Valparaiso because it’s such a community-oriented event.”
“We look upon ourselves as a community cafe, and we want every meal to be a memory for people," said Al Shields of Greenwich Terrace Cafe as he prepared ribs. "This event gives people an opportunity to appreciate that.”
From Tommy B’s sushi, to Designer Desserts’ sea salt caramel cupcakes, to La Cabana’s horchata water, to Bistro 157’s West African chicken curry soup, to Valpo Velvet’s spicy Aztec hot chocolate ice cream ... many concurred Valparaiso never tasted so good.