Best of Baldwin serves as welcome back
Baker University students and Baldwin City businesses will know each other a little bit better after tomorrow night.
For the third year in a row, the Baldwin City Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring the Best of Baldwin from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday.
"It's designed as a welcome back for Baker students," Chamber office manager Sharole Prahl said.
Around 13 Baldwin businesses, including several restaurants, will have booths set up under a tent in the lawn area at the intersection of Seventh and Grove streets, southwest of Mabee Hall.
Chamber president Brenda Day said each vendor will have samples of food or other items from their businesses to hand out that evening.
"This is basically shows the students the different services that are offered in Baldwin," Day said.
The Best of Baldwin is a good way to introduce the community to the students, she said.
"With young people, their spending habits are established early," she said. "By doing this, we can show them we have really good services in Baldwin and that they don't have to go to Lawrence."
Harter Union will not be serving any meals Thursday evening in hopes of encouraging students to attend the event.
"With a ticket, you can get a sample of food from each of the restaurants. It's kind of like a taste of Baldwin," Prahl said. "By the time you go to all these food places, you're feeling pretty full."
Day said the event is more than just an introductory course for businesses and a variety of food samples for students.
"It's also a chance for students to get an idea of the job prospects available," she said.
Students are also made aware of possible volunteer opportunities in Baldwin as well, she said.
But the Best of Baldwin is not restricted to just Baker students, Prahl said. Even though the first year was predominantly attended by students, she said the Baldwin resident and Baker professor attendance increased at last year's event.
"It's really picking up. We're looking forward for the word to continue to spread," she said. "It's not just a Baker event, it's for everyone."
Tickets are required to attend. Baker students' tickets are provided, but anyone else wanting to attend needs to purchase a $5 ticket from the Chamber of Commerce or Baldwin State Bank.
Day said everyone who attends should have a good time.
"It really is a neat get together," she said.