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Making It Great For ’68 Part 1

Making It Great For ’68 Part 1
Posted on 02/13/2019
Warren Tech chef instructor Joachim Schaaf goes over menu details with culinary arts student Tatiana Murphy as part of a catering assignment for the Jefferson High School Class of 1968 reunion.Happy memories never wear out, and there were plenty of happy memories to go around as the Jefferson High School class of 1968 headed into their old school for a walk through time. For some, this marked their first visit since graduation, and it took a bit to reconcile the Jefferson High School they once knew, with the Jefferson Jr./Sr. High School of today.

“We’ve had a really good turnout. Real happy with it,” said reunion committee member Steve Legault.
The tour was just one of several fifty-year reunion celebrations planned and prepared for the class of 1968. The big one was a catered night at the Lamar Street Center in Arvada.

The pressure was on to make the dining for the class of 1968 extra special, and that pressure fell not on some high-end caterer, but squarely on the shoulders of Jeffco high schoolers; all of the culinary arts students at Warren Tech.

“We’re really excited to have the kids participate in this; keep it in the county and the school district. We’re real believers in youth,” said Legault.

The Warren Tech students were just as excited to serve the former Jeffco grads.
“It’s a huge honor to get to do that; to be the ones chosen to do that because there’s a lot of other catering companies out there,” said Warren Tech student Rachel Strotz.

“They’re putting a lot of trust into students who haven’t been in the kitchen for a while,” added fellow Warren Tech student Tatiana Murphy. “We try to make everything as nice as possible for everyone and we try to go above and beyond for our customers because we want them to come back and enjoy our food.”

Warren Tech chef instructor Joachim Schaaf oversees the students as they brought the class of 1968 menu to life in the school’s teaching kitchen, with valuable learning at every step.

“Overall, we have prepped all week. Six hours of prep a day times four days, with 76 students,” Schaff explained. “It’s always about planning and organization in the kitchen and in the front of the house. Just to get 17, 18-year-olds to plan and structure what has to be done for that three-hour period, is a good exercise.”

They’re now just 24 hours away from their job of making it great for 1968.

“I try not to put a bunch of pressure on it because then you start getting overwhelmed,” said Strotz.

“I have no doubts it will be perfect,” added Schaff.

A look at how they did, as our story continues in Part 2.

See the JPS-TV version of this story here or below.

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