Family fun on menu at TOH event

A night filled with fun, charity and tantalized taste buds will be on tap for all those who attend this year’s Taste of Home Cooking School, brought to you by The Inter-Mountain and Elkins Distributing.

Featuring a vendor fair that opens at 2 p.m. and a live show at 6:30 p.m., the event is slated for Thursday at the new armory in Randolph County. Parking at the armory is limited to VIP guests. All other ticket holders will have free shuttle service from the Junior Fire Department to the venue, which is located on U.S. Route 33 West about 10 miles from Elkins.

Signs will be placed at the turning point for both the Junior parking area and the armory itself. Parking at both locations is free.

One again, Wal-Mart is the grocery sponsor for the show, and donations are being collected to benefit the Catholic Charities food bank, which serves the region. Anyone who brings a nonperishable food item to the event will receive an extra ticket per donated item for the grand prize drawing, a $1,000 shopping spree at Ralph’s Furniture. Those who bring in receipts showing the item was purchased at Wal-Mart will receive an extra ticket per receipt. In addition to the grand prize, dozens of items will be given away and range from gift certificates to specialty baskets and much more.

“You don’t want to miss it. We’re really excited for this year’s show,” Inter-Mountain Publisher Heather Goodwin Henline said. “Bud Light Lime is a national sponsor, and we’re delighted Elkins Distributing has partnered with us to bring this event to the community. Their vendor booth will feature the Budweiser family of products among other exciting options, and free tastings will be available.”

VIP tickets, in addition to the premium parking, also include an exclusive private tasting reception, sponsored by Elk Springs Resort and its signature restaurant, Ellie May’s. The tasting will begin at 5 p.m. and will last about 60 minutes. Guests are encouraged to bring their cameras for the meet-and-greet time during the tasting with Taste of Home Culinary Specialist Cheryl Cohen.

The Inter-Mountain will unveil Ellie May Executive Chef Jerry Strawderman’s VIP tasting menu as part of its countdown coverage of the show. The menu will be featured in Tuesday’s edition, and the vendor fair exhibitors will be announced Wednesday.

“There will be plenty of food, fun and shopping,” Goodwin Henline said of the vendor fair, which will run from 2 p.m. until the show begins at 6:30.

General admission tickets remain and are only $10 each. All tickets include parking, admission to the vendor fair and show as well as a commemorative goodie bag filled with Taste of Home magazines, money-saving coupons and product give-aways as well as information about local and national businesses.

To purchase a ticket, which are buy-one, get-one-free this week, stop by The Inter-Mountain at 520 Railroad Ave. in Elkins, or call 304-636-2121. Admission will be $10 at the door.

“The show is suitable for an audience of all ages. Men, women and children enjoy a fun afternoon and evening out with family and/or friends,” Goodwin Henline said. “Even those who don’t cook will enjoy all the vendor fair has to offer and the lively atmosphere at the show.”