New Culinary Arts Center Grand Opening Celebration

New Culinary Arts Center Grand Opening Celebration

Manchester, CT –January 18, 2007. . . To celebrate the newly renovated Culinary Arts Center, Manchester Community College invites the community to attend a grand opening celebration and open house event on Tuesday, February 6 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. - 8 p.m. in the Culinary Arts Center located in the Lowe Building.

After many months of construction and renovations, the community will get an exclusive look at the state-of-the-art facility that has been transformed from one-large dining space to feature three separate dining rooms.

The grand opening celebration will feature food samples and beverages throughout the day prepared by the Culinary Arts students, as well as tours of the kitchen and new dining room facilities. A variety of workshops will also be available for guests interested in learning a new culinary skill, including knife sharpening, simple cake decorating or plate garnishing.

The three dining rooms have distinctive design elements and were named after three Connecticut families close to the area and the College. The naming of the dining rooms was unanimously approved by the Board of Trustees of Connecticut Community-Technical Colleges. The Cheney Dining Room, Alice and Alexander Jarvis Dining Room, and the Geraldine and Vincent Lesunaitis Dining Room will be used as teaching and learning spaces for students in the College’s Culinary Arts programs and its credit free courses. They will also be used for college meetings, community events and the always-sold-out luncheons and dinners that are prepared as part of the MCC hospitality curriculum.

The Cheney Dining Room is named for Manchester’s Cheney Family, founders of what would become the world's largest silk mill and who were responsible for Manchester being known as what has been categorized as an “ideal industrial community.” The naming of the dining room acknowledges the Cheney Family’s indelible stamp on the Manchester community and the historic significance of their contributions to the College’s service area.

The second dining room is named in memory of Alice and Alexander Jarvis, who were prominent real estate developers in Manchester. A bequest from Mrs. Jarvis to Manchester Community College was instrumental in funding the renovation of the Culinary Arts Center and was the largest single gift from an individual ever received by the College.

The third space is named in honor of Geraldine and Vincent Lesunaitis. Mrs. Lesunaitis, a resident of Hamden, is the premier benefactor of the College’s An Evening of Fine Wines. In 2000, she donated a considerable portion of her late husband’s wine collection to the Manchester Community College Foundation. Due in large part to her generosity, the Foundation has received more than $1 million from the annual event since its inception 15 years ago. Mr. Lesunaitis, who had a long career in state government administration, taught wine appreciation at MCC, as well as at other local colleges.

The schedule of events for the grand opening celebration is as follows:
10 a.m. Knife Sharpening
11 a.m. Simple Cake Decorating
12 noon Plate Garnishing
1 p.m. Modeling Marzipan
5 p.m. Knife Sharpening
6 p.m. Simple Cake Decorating
7 p.m. Plate Garnishing

For more information on the Culinary Arts Center grand opening celebration and open house, contact Jayne Pearson at (860) 512-2785 or email

Students of any age who possess the desire to pursue higher education are welcome at Manchester Community College. MCC is proud of its academic excellence, new facilities, flexible schedules, small classes, low tuition and faculty with both academic and “real world” credentials. The College offers over 60 programs, transfer options, financial aid and scholarships, as well as access to baccalaureate degrees through guaranteed admissions programs with several universities. MCC is situated on a park-like campus and is easily accessible from I-84.
News Item Posted On: January 18, 2007
For Additional Information Contact: Endia DeCordova-Murphy at (860) 512-2914