Tuesday, February 23

Chocolate For A Good Cause

One of the culinary events I look forward to every year is Michigan State University Museum's annual Chocolate Party Benefit. It is an important fundraiser for the MSU Museum with proceeds to benefit the management and preservation of its diverse natural and cultural history collections. This event offers sponsors and participants a delicious way to support the MSU Museum. Chocolate lovers, foodies, and museum friends get to indulge for a worthy cause. What could be better than this?

Participating sponsors from Greater Lansing and Mid-Michigan area -- local bakers, pastry chef, and chocolatiers -- brought their signature treats for attendees to sample. Then, it was a professional culinary competition that has been my highlight of this event, every single year! It was fascinating to see all the elaborate and imaginative chocolate sculptures made by local chefs. The winners were chosen by professional trained culinary judges.

Three teams competed in the competition to create edible chocolate masterpiece. Their creation was inspired by this year's theme - from the movie, "Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian".

1st Place: by Krist Jablonski, from Kaleidoscope Pastries

2nd Place: by Rodney Nichols, Pastry Chef from Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort, and assistant, Jess Leineke

3rd Place: the Art Institute of Michigan, Novi. Denetia Lyons : Chef Instructor, Student Team : Mai, Lupita, Krista & Meghan


Here are some of the participating chocolatiers ...

Beautiful displays and scrumptious samples from "Bake N’ Cakes"

Love those pretty cupcakes!

Gourmet Toffees and Brittles from 'R Candys

Pretty Sweet Pretzels: Gourmet Specialities


The Michigan State University Museum's collections share the wonders of the natural and cultural world. Event attendees also got to view some of the museum's precious pieces, at the on-site exhibit. I was very excited to see a woman's headpiece for traditional Thai dance was among them...

The MSU Museum is located on West Circle Drive next to Beaumont Tower on the MSU campus. It is open seven days a week free of charge (donations are encouraged).

(Left): Gary Morgan - Museum Director, thanked participants, sponsors, and staffs, in closing of the event.
(Right): Laura Abraczinskas - Collections Manager for Vertebrate Natural Science Collections, and Lynne Swanson - Collections Manager for Cultural Collections

Another view of the winning creation


I am already looking forward to the next year's Chocolate Party Benefit :)

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