Volunteers set up the serving line under the
supervision of Executive Chef Kevin Cook ...
... and stand ready to greet the guests.
With a the completion of a Kitchen renovation at Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, the church's soup kitchen ministry has restarted, with meals served every Tuesday.
Named Valarie's Kitchen in honor of the late Valarie Fisher, who encouraged its beginnings, the kitchen is the result of a successful $300,000 fundraising effort and involves the complete renovation of the original 80-year-old kitchen and installation of new state-of-the-art equipment.
Valarie (who incidentally was also the first director of Grace's Kitchen at Grace Episcopal Church) -- after realizing that the church's kitchen was functioning while many members' homes were without power -- encouraged the congregation to open its doors and bring together those who had food that would otherwise spoil to cook and serve it to the hungry.
The program grew through word of mouth until there were volunteers from the church and the community at large who prepared lunches for as many as 250 guests each week.
Volunteers serve under the supervision of Executive Chef Kevin Cook. Cook is a seasoned executive chef with more than ten years experience in such fine dining establishments as the Somerset Hills Hotel in Somerset and the Lake Edge Restaurant in Watchung.
The reopening of the kitchen with expanded services is just one of many initiatives that Crescent Avenue Presbyterian has planned for the celebration of its 175th anniversary in 2019. Volunteers -- either individuals or groups -- are welcome. For more information, calling the church at (908) 756-2468 or visit the church’s web site here.
-- Dan Damon [follow]
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