Regardless of the weather, there’s always one sure sign that spring has arrived — the Concord Family YMCA’s annual Spring Social. Now in its 10th year, the benefit features a wine and beer tasting as well as a Top Chef Cook Off challenge between guest restaurants.
“What I hear from people is they can’t wait to figure out what they’re serving,” YMCA Development Director Paula Taylor said. “I think the fact that they’re able to taste and test so many different wines and beers — and the food — it’s not your typical chicken dinner fundraiser.”
This year, Granite Restaurant & Bar at the Centennial Hotel, The Barley House, O Steaks & Seafood and the Celery Stick Café at the Concord Food Co-op are all participating in the Top Chef Cook Off. The restaurants will each bring a featured spring appetizer. To vote in the Top Chef challenge, guests will receive a flower along with a program book when they arrive to the event. Each restaurant will have a vase on its table where guests can place their flowers to cast votes.
New Hampshire Distributors will provide beers for the tasting, and it’s also one of the lead sponsors for the evening, Taylor said. Other beverage vendors include R.P. Imports, Gala Wines, Horizon Beverages, Wineberries, Zorvino Vineyards of Sandown and Candia Vineyards.
“In years past they’ve had three to four different wines each,” Taylor said.
In addition to the wine, beer and food tastings, the evening also includes a raffle with items like a luxury box for 18 at a Fisher Cats game, a trip to Waterville Valley and Red Sox tickets. Funds raised during the Spring Social benefit the Concord Family YMCA’s annual campaign, which helps to give families and kids the opportunity to experience YMCA programming, like after-school care and summer camp.
“We would just love a great turnout from our community,” Taylor said. “That’s why we get really excited about doing events like this because it gives people the chance to see the Y in a different light. … It’s a great social aspect to come out with friends and co-workers, celebrate Concord and give back to an amazing charity.”
As seen in the April 10, 2014 issue of the Hippo.