The idea of a food-and-wine gala under the September stars – in order to fundraise for Ozarks children’s charities — came to longtime culinary professional Phil Daniels and a select committee a few years ago. And, for Daniels, it was right up his kitchen, er, alley.
After all, savory bites by world-trained chefs and specialty cocktails on a picturesque setting of white-clothed tables, white chairs and white linens seemed the perfect way to enhance the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper, which at the time was celebrating its 25th year.
Lo and behold, the Harvest Moon Festival presented by Reinhart Foodservice will mark its fourth annual event this September with a chance to continue as a fundraising engine for the PCCC, having generated roughly $300,000 in the past three years.
To experience this upscale evening, join us at 5 p.m. on Sunday, September 24 on the immaculate driving range of Highland Springs Country Club in Springfield. This year’s event already has invited 15 chefs, more than double the number from its inaugural year.
The menu is derived from concepts that guests cannot normally access in the Springfield market. Even better, all items are “small plate” concepts so guests can sample new dishes without feeling overly full. Beverage offerings include great wines, nice local brews and specialty drinks hand-crafted by mixologists. In essence, there is something for everyone.
Tickets for the event are $500 a couple, or $1,850 for a sponsorship table of eight. Call us at 417-887-3400.
“Oddly enough, culinary people like doing it,” said Daniels, who worked 25 years for nationally recognized food service, marketing and culinary firms and who now has a farm that provides produce to Farmer’s Gastro Pub. “Many restaurants are closed on Sundays, and this allows the chef to do something for charity. You’d be surprised how many of them say, ‘This is the most fun I have all year.’ And these are people who work 14 hours a day.”
The elegance of the Harvest Moon Festival cannot be topped, if you ask those who attend some of the Ozarks’ other elite food-and-wine events.
“We’re proud to do anything for the community, but the biggest thing is the fact is it benefits local children’s charities. This is a little part of that pie,” Beth Yarbrough said. “We don’t attend any other fundraisers that are like this.”
Dwayne Holden, owner of Custom Metalcraft, echoed those comments. He and Yarbrough also are key members of the Harvest Moon committee.
“It’s so different a setting. It’s done under the stars. It’s totally different than some place confined, in an auditorium,” Holden said.
What a run it’s been for the Harvest Moon, with Reinhart Foodservice the presenting sponsor for a second consecutive year.
“The first year, we wanted it to feel like an upscale hospitality area at the U.S. Open,” Daniels said. “Everybody loved that. It is about the food, but it’s also become about the beverage. We have a mixologist come in, and we’ll exchange ideas and create some very trend-leading, hand-crafted beverages for the event.”
Best of all, the Harvest Moon Festival has the potential to be your last big outdoor event before cold weather arrives.
“Highland Springs is a beautiful setting as it is,” said Kim Lorenzen, owner of Macadoodles and member of the committee. “But you relax on the driving range with white chairs, white table cloths and world-trained chefs, and you have this beautiful evening.”
CHEF/OPERATIONS PLANNING TO PARTICIPATE
- Highland Springs Country Club – Brad Lyons
- Big Cedar/Top of the Rock – Mike Halbert
- The Keeter Center – Rober Stricklin & Staff
- Vito’s Kitchen – Vito Palmietto
- That Lebanese Place – Elie Ghanem
- Aaron Brooks Catering – Aaron Brooks
- Reinhart Foods — DSRs
- Farmers Gastro Pub – Andy Hampshire
- Metropolitan Farmer – Wes Johnson
- OTC Culinary School – Paul Trout & Staff
- Chateau Celine – Phil Daniels
- Avanzare — Tony Garcia
OUR LIVE AUCTION
- Artwork by Cindy Scott – She will be on site painting a portrait of the event!
- A scooter
- Beef & processing by Hormann Meats
- Fire pit
- TPS Sawgrass package
- Table Rock Lake house – 5,000 square feet, 5 bedrooms, 3 baths, sleeps 12, seven nights
- New York Hotel golf and air transportation, three nights
- Condo in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida – 2 king beds, 2 bats, sleeps 6, eight miles from Seaside and Rosemary Beach, 290 steps from beautiful gulf coast. 7 nights (between April 1 – August 31, 2018 with 30 days notice)
- Casa Suenos — five ocean-facing suites with a full staff on hand!
- Springfield Dining Package
- World Golf Village package
- Master’s Golf Package
- Missouri Tigers basketball package
- Legends Golf Bag & VIP passes
- Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort & Spa package
- TaylorMade set of irons
- Knife set
- In-home wine tasting for 10
- The Club at Porto Cima four-some and two rooms at Camden on the Lake
- Mizzou football package