Seeds Community Café brings Guest Chef Series to UCCS

April 18, 2016

Halle Thornton
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Earth Day doesn’t just have to be about bringing awareness to environmental issues.

Seeds Community Café, located at 109 E. Pikes Peak Ave., and the Office of Sustainability have partnered to bring the first UCCS guest chef event to the campus on Earth Day.

Seeds founder Lyn Harwell will cook a vegan meal for 400 people in celebration of Earth Day on April 22 from 5-7 the Roaring Fork Dining Hall. A movie, “Forks over Knives,” will follow dinner.

Students must present a campus ID to get into the event. The meal costs $7.95 for those with a meal plan or campus ID and $15.95 for those who are non-campus community.

The event is open to the public, but aims to educate students and promote healthy eating, according to Harwell.

“We will be showing a movie and having a panel discussion about eating meat versus eating vegan.”

Director of Dining and Hospitality Services Mark Hayes started the Guest Chef Series. Two events at the Roaring Fork and The Lodge are planned to be held each year.

The purpose of the event is to raise awareness for sustainability, local food procurement and nutrition.

“The event is held to introduce the campus community to local chefs and the foods they offer,” said Hayes.

The menu mainly consists of plant-based foods. Culinary staff from the Roaring Fork, SWELL sports nutrition graduate students and volunteers from Food Next Door on campus are involved in the event.

UCCS and Seeds have worked together for the last three years to cater events.

The UCCS Greenhouse provides fresh produce and herbs to Seeds. The partnership has extended to include Health Science associate professor Nanna Meyer to promote healthy eating for students as well.

The UCCS Greenhouse’s goal is to provide high-quality, organically grown produce, and to educate the campus community about new gardening methods and sustainable growing solutions, according to Hayes.

The greenhouse grows a variety of fruits and vegetables including tomatoes, squash, several herbs, apples, pears and plumbs, among others.

Hayes explained that the food from the greenhouse goes to the Food Next Door Station in Café 65 during the school year.