The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

March 28, 2013

Taste of Home Cooking School event is slated Tuesday at Convention Hall

By James Neal, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Aspiring chefs and foodies can network and learn new recipes and skills at the Taste of Home Cooking School.

The cooking school, organized and sponsored by Enid News & Eagle, will feature Taste of Home culinary specialist Jamie Dunn. The event will be 3-9:30 p.m. Tuesday at Convention Hall.

Dunn graduated from Oklahoma State University and now conducts Taste of Home Cooking School shows throughout the United States, with a focus on Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. Dunn previously taught culinary science at Tulsa Technology Center and Bama Cooking School of Tulsa.

Doors will open for Tuesday’s event at 3 p.m., and vendors’ exhibits will be open 3:30-6:30 p.m. Vendors’ booths will include clothing and accessories, women’s fashion, kitchen accessories and more.

Dunn’s cooking instruction will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Paula Deterding, event organizer for the News & Eagle, said the cooking demonstrations will give attendees a first-hand look at how to recreate Dunn’s dishes, and learn some new cooking techniques.

“She actually cooks right in front of them, and there will be a large screen behind her projecting what she’s doing,” Deterding said. “She really gets the audience involved, and she makes it a fun atmosphere.”

Scotty Maxwell, News & Eagle advertising director, said this year’s event will outpace past years, in part because of the availability of the newly renovated Convention Hall.

“I think it’s going to be bigger and better than ever this year,” Maxwell said, “especially being able to use the new Convention Hall facility.”

He said the new audio and video equipment available in Convention Hall will help “make it a really good event.”

Maxwell said the Taste of Home Cooking School has drawn in more than 600 people in past years, and organizers this year are expecting as many as 700 to attend.

Frank Baker, Eagle Marketing director and long-time emcee for the event, said the cooking show draws in attendees from across northern Oklahoma.

“I don’t think there’s an event that I’ve been involved with through the years that gets into as many small communities as this event does,” Baker said. “This draws in people from every little community throughout north central and northwest Oklahoma, because the appeal for this is just amazing.”

Baker said the show now has even wider appeal, as more men have begun to take up cooking as a hobby.

“I’m always impressed with how this show doesn’t just attract a female audience, like it used to,” Baker said. “It’s now more of a mix, with more guys getting more involved in cooking.”

Baker said the event will be fun for anyone who loves food and cooking.

Tickets for the show are $12 in advance and $15 at the door. Tickets can be purchased in advance at www.enideventcen

VIP and Elite VIP tickets also are available. The VIP tickets cost $30 and include seating in rows two and three at the show.

Elite VIP tickets are $50, and include front row seating, a pre-show meet and greet with Dunn and a Taste of Home cookbook valued at $17.95.

VIP and Elite VIP tickets must be purchased in person before the show at the Enid News & Eagle advertising desk, 227 W. Broadway.