Written by Watkins Kelly // Photo by Macy Cox
Harding’s Student Association (SA) held the second annual club cookoff on Friday, Dec. 2. Teams of three representing four different social clubs competed in a friendly competition to showcase their love and talent for cooking.
Junior Max Guyer worked alongside sophomore Donnie Ray Brown to organize the event. Both are members of the SA and coordinated committee members and club representatives to hold a successful cookoff. Guyer said excitement over the inaugural cookoff in 2021 encouraged the SA to bring it back to campus.
“A lot of people had a good time with it last year,” Guyer said. “And it was something more unique and encouraged a lot of teamwork from the teams that were creating together, so those were the main reasons we decided to do it again.”
The SA built on the existing framework of the competition but made adjustments based on feedback and ideas from the SA and committee members. One of the major changes was the expansion from a single dish to a three-course meal including an appetizer, entrée and dessert.
Awards were given out for each course, allowing clubs to shine in individual categories that suited their skills. The awards were decided on by a panel of judges including junior Hannah Diles, senior Davis Cofer and Executive Vice President Jean-Noel Thompson. Diles said the addition of two courses allowed for each club to establish an individualized theme that let their talents and interests shine through.
“Last year, we did it themed just on Italian food,” Diles said. “This year we had a variety at all the appetizer, main course and dessert levels. It was a lot easier and more fun because each of the clubs that participated had a different theme going on so it was easier to differentiate.”
Women’s social club Pi Theta Phi was awarded the overall best meal as well as best dessert. The team consisted of senior Kristin Walker, and juniors Emilie Wilkenson and Anna Grace Langdon.
The team was given a Christmas gift basket as a prize for first place overall. More so than the reward, Wilkenson said the opportunity to work alongside friends and bond with other clubs was rewarding.
“One of the best parts was right after the competition ended,” Wilkenson said. “The SA people and all the participants tried each other’s food and talked about how we made it, and that part was really fun.”