Balloons and other adornments decorated the room and created a warm and festive environment in the Café at the Brooklyn Sports Club (BSC) during Spring Creek Senior Partners’ (SCSP) Fall Ball Food Festival on November 25.
The community’s seniors turned out for the Thanksgiving party to share and enjoy favorite homemade dishes. Multi-cultural delicacies filled the air with mouthwatering aromas. Alex Franco and her friend Isabel Ramirez dedicated hours to preparing and baking pernil, a scrumptious Puerto Rican dish.
The secret, says Franco, is marinating a pork shoulder in garlic, Adobo and a pinch of salt for two days. “It took a long time, but it tastes great,” said Franco, who woke up at the crack of dawn to bake the pernil for six hours.
Franco and Ramirez’s dish was one of many international gustatory delights to choose from. The banquet included turkey, roasted potatoes, Spanish and West Indian rice dishes, and spinach lasagna. SCSP Director Theodroa Ziongas contributed a few of her favorite holiday dishes, such as sweet potato pie, string bean salad and cranberry sauce. Volunteers from the ARC, a rehabilitative service group that provides care for adults with developmental disabilities, assisted SCSP by serving the Ball’s guests. ARC’s volunteers visit SCSP on a monthly basis to help with other aspects of its community services.
At friends’ invitation Eugene Thompson attended his first SCSP food fest, one of a couple held during the year. “Everything smells delicious,” he said smiling and eating from a plate with string beans, rice, turkey, corn bread and lasagna. And for his first time, Thompson also tried pierogi; a traditional Eastern European dumpling stuffed with onions, sauerkraut and cheese. “It’s not too bad,” he said after trying a forkful.
For dessert, Shelia Pinder, 70, bought sponge cake from a West Indian bakery to share. “I wanted to get something not too sweet, but still tasty for everyone to enjoy,” she said placing the cake covered in white, yellow and green frosting on the dessert table, which was filled with fruits, chocolate, tiramisu, apple, sweet potato and pumpkin pies.
The entire affair resembled a large family gathering, where neighbors shared home cooked food and funny anecdotes with each other.
By Amanda Moses
EDITED AGNES E. GREEN