Downtown Hays Development Corporation (DHDC) and Gella’s Diner are excited to present the fifth annual Farm to Fork Dinner Event on October 15 inside the newly renovated Strand Event Center. This incredible five-course meal is always an unforgettable evening, and 2020 will be no different.
Gella’s Diner & Lb. Brewing Co.’s Executive Chef, Manuel Hernandez, will once again prepare the evening delicacies. Chef Hernandez delights in telling each course’s story and takes guests on a journey through his experience with each dish. The menu will be announced via Facebook by the end of this week.
Each local grower and producer who contributes ingredients to the meal will also be recognized and thanked for their hard work and commitment to providing local food sources. Nearly every ingredient is thanks to Downtown Hays Market vendors and other local producers. Many of those vendors attend the event, so guests get to meet the farmers behind the food.
“This has always been one of my favorite events DHDC hosts,” said Sara Bloom, DHDC Executive Director. “The atmosphere, the food, the people, just the concept, it’s all so special. The Downtown Hays Market vendors work so hard throughout the year, and I’m glad we get to recognize and celebrate that in such a unique fashion.”
The 2020 event will be the third time the event has been hosted inside the historic Strand Theatre, but the first time the venue has been completely restored.
“We’ve had this event in this building with no electricity, no restrooms, and limited space, and it’s still been truly incredible,” Bloom said. “Now, to get to have it with original restored ceilings, beautiful chandeliers, a stage, a balcony, just so much; I’m very excited.”
Dustin and Laney Roths recently bought the over 5,000-square-foot building at 1102 Main. Much of the building’s original look has been restored into the new design, bringing back much of the architectural touches. The Farm to Fork Dinner will only be the fourth event inside the Strand Event Center.
Dinner begins promptly at 6:00 pm with hor d’oeuvres and a local wine sampling. As guests arrive, each one will be entered into a drawing to win handcrafted gifts from various Downtown Hays Market vendors. The remaining courses will begin at 7:00 pm.
Traditionally tables at this event are set up in a classic banquet style setting or long rows of rectangle tables. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, this is the most significant change.
“This year has forced us to take many extra precautions with ourselves and our community’s health and safety,” said Allie Glidewell, DHDC Director of Events. “We like this event to feel like you’re eating with family and hope you meet someone new. Unfortunately, this year, we will be separating tables to maintain as much physical distancing as possible, much like what you would see at local restaurants.”
Tickets went on sale today, Monday, Sept. 14, at 8:00 am. In-office, tickets are $60 for a single or $450 for a table of eight. Stop by 1200 Main Street to purchase. Online tickets are $65 for a single or $455 for a table of eight. Visit www.downtownhays.com to purchase. Only 104 tickets will be sold.