The Washougal High School culinary classroom had the energy of a high-end restaurant kitchen with students chopping and cooking and prepping for their big final exam!  A real-time, real-life food fair in the school’s outdoor courtyard on May 27.

Teams of Intro to Culinary students worked to prepare and “sell” their menu items.  Hot, fresh cooked food was slid through an open window like a restaurant kitchen food counter to be delivered to tent covered tables for customers to make their selections.

Family and staff waited in the WHS commons for the start of the event where they were issued fun money to “purchase” their selected meal choices.  Chef Brenda Hitchins, WHS Culinary teacher, welcomed the group, telling them the students were excited and nervous to present their work. “Just give them our support and patience,” she said.  “They have worked hard. Enjoy and please fill out the feedback forms for each group so they know how well they did.”

And the hard work paid off.  Dozens of happy customers nibbled on delicious food items such as street tacos, sliders, nachos and yogurt parfait, comparing their meals and making their plans for the next tent to visit. Feedback forms showed high marks for students in Customer Service, Cleanliness, Presentation and more.

Later that morning, a second Intro to Culinary class offered their creations and the next day the baking class had a chance to offer their delicious creations.

Rowan Sharp, WHS 9th grade student, was a part of the Burger House, where for $3 of fun money a customer enjoyed a beef and cheese slider with watermelon on the side.  “It was fun,” she said. “It felt real.  It was not too stressful because we had a good process, and everyone worked together.”

“I am very proud of the students,” said Hitchins.  “I did not get as much time with them this year as I would have liked, but they rose to the challenge today.  They pushed their boundaries and were able to see what they could do.”