After an almost year-and-a-half delay due to the Covid-19 pandemic, SUNY Broome was finally able to proudly and formally open its doors and welcome the community to the beautifully restored Culinary & Event Center (CEC), located in the heart of Downtown Binghamton.
Roughly 200 members of the community gathered in front of the CEC on Thursday, October 7, 2021. The grand opening ceremony, held at 3 p.m., featured remarks from state and local officials, SUNY Broome Administration, and SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras.
“In 1901, the men and women of our community craved a congregate space for learning. 120 years later, our needs have not changed. If a year-and-a-half “on pause” has shown us anything, it is that we naturally yearn for spaces to commune with our neighbors and friends, and that is especially so when good food is at hand. That is just what our Culinary & Event Center will provide – a space for the campus community and the community at large, to gather and to be connected for cooking classes, conferences, meetings, parties, weddings, and more,” said SUNY Broome’s President, Dr. Kevin Drumm.
The $21.5 million restoration project was made possible through a combination of tax credits, restoration grants, and local and state funding. The center includes state-of-the-art amenities such as smart classroom and laboratory spaces, garde manger and production kitchens, a fully equipped beverage lab for mixology classes, a state-of-the-art lecture hall for cooking demonstrations, premiere event spaces, and bean-to-bar chocolate equipment.
Dr. Drumm devoted a large portion of his remarks to thanking a myriad of individuals and groups for their participation in transforming the once decaying Carnegie Library into the masterfully restored Culinary & Event Center.
“This project was truly a community effort – bonded by our collective desire to restore this magnificent building and pay tribute to it’s value to Broome County for the past 120 years and for many more decades to come,” shared Dr. Drumm.
Following the ribbon-cutting, the Dr. Kevin Drumm welcomed visitors to participate in an open house. Students and faculty greeted guests and provided mini-tours highlighting each room and explaining details about the facility’s specialty equipment. The Culinary students prepared Apple Pie Punch Mocktails, Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies with a Maple Glaze, and Crudités with Creamy Feta Dip, White Bean Dip, and Pita Crisps for the guests.
In addition to housing all of the Hospitality programs, the CEC will play home to a series of continuing education courses and workshops. Members of the community can participate in fun, three-hour, cooking classes like “Canapes and Cocktails” and “Game Day Gourmet.”
For more information about SUNY Broome’s Culinary Arts: A.O.S. degree, Hospitality Management: A.A.S degree, Event Management: A.O.S. degree, or the Culinary & Hospitality Continuing Education courses, please visit our website!