SRU Foundation to host “Enchanted Rock Garden” Gala May 21


Enchanted Rock Garden Gala 2016

April 11, 2016

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The Slippery Rock University Foundation, Inc. will host its biannual President's Scholarship Gala - featuring an "Enchanted Rock Garden" theme - from 6:30-11 p.m., May 21 in the Smith Student Center.

Launched in 2006, the event has generated more than $600,000 in scholarship monies for Slippery Rock University students. This year's event has set a goal of generating $100,000 in scholarship aid.

"Every scholarship award makes a difference for our students, and because of the generosity of our friends and supporters, SRU can continue to provide outstanding educational opportunities to students across the region and beyond," said Ed Bucha, executive director of the SRU Foundation.

"The Scholarship Gala is not only important for the money it brings in for student scholarships, it's also an exciting way to spend time with friends and colleagues," said Deb Baker, director of special events and member of the planning committee.

"The menu is fun and unique and affords all participants the opportunity to taste fresh and tasty new foods. The DJ plays music for all generations and will be taking requests. Sponsors and auction donors have been very generous with the gifts they have given us and the Green and White Ambassadors, who work at the event, are vibrant and enthusiastic students who welcome the interaction with our guests."

Among the various activities planned for the evening are:

  • Silent auctions featuring gift cards to various restaurants, hotels, movies and theatres, fitness, transportation, salon and recreational venues; various gift baskets; SRU clothing and faculty-written books; works of art from SRU faculty, faculty emeriti, students and local artists; home goods; jewelry; and numerous lawn and garden items.
  • Mystery envelopes where participants can purchase a sealed envelope for $20 with the gift inside guaranteed to be worth at least $20; and
  • A money/lottery tree

According to Baker, food is always a big draw at the gala, and this year will be no exception.

The evening's menu will include a variety of appetizers: smoked gouda porter fondue; assorted breads; fresh berry display; local cheeses; assorted olives, peppadew and pickled onions with crostini and crackers; pork and duck terrine; dusted scallop and pickled okra; bacon wrapped lamb tenderloin; butter poached lobster beggars purse; mushroom endive kappu.

Salads and soups include: red oak and fraise paired with a parmesan herb tuile; watercress and arugula in a bird's nest pastry; Belgium endive filled with apple, pear and fig; classic vichyssoise; chilled potato and leek soup garnished with pea shoots; Bloody Mary Napoleon; tomatoes served with a celery root salad with infused vodka.

Entrees will feature: duck confit and wild mushroom risotto cake; braised beef with roasted root vegetable bolognaise served over Mediterranean polenta cakes; and king crab BLT with caviar mayo.

A carving station will include: pancetta wrapped beef tenderloin; rack of veal with shitake mushroom sauce; Chilean sea bass with fig and cranberry chutney and dilled hollandaise sauce.

For dessert, there will be: dark chocolate panna cotta; cardamom carrot cake cupcakes; lemon thyme macaroons; rose bouquet cake pops; and meringues on chocolate logs.

DJ Jim Henry will provide music for the evening with photos available from Sharp Image Studios.

The event planning committee includes: Nora Ambrosio, professor of dance; Deb Baker, director of special events; Joe Balaban, resident director for AVI Food Systems; Michael Boone, University technical director; Ed Bucha, executive director, SRU Foundation; Chris Cole, Smith Student Center director; Dallas Cott, assistant director for campus services, facilities and planning; Diana Dreyer, professor emeritus of English; Jodi Hensel, executive staff assistant in University Advancement; Judy Hughes, community liaison; Nick McIntire, constituent services and database assurance manager; Doug McMullen, chair of the SRU Foundation Inc.; Tina Moser, chief of staff, president's office; Sharon Patterson, office manager, dining services; Deb Pincek, executive director for academic and student affairs resources; Tina Proper, assistant to the vice president of finance, administrative affairs and advancement services; Kelli Rensel, administrative assistant, president's office; Kathleen Strickland, professor emeritus of English; and Samantha Swift, director of development for the SRU Foundation.

Tickets, priced at $125, are available by calling 724.738.2004 or visiting

MEDIA CONTACT: Robb King | 724.738.2199 |