IN ITS second year, the Big Sunday Out in Heathcote has again raised funds to aid the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation program at Heathcote Primary School.
A lunch was held on September 10 at Wild Duck Creek Estate Winery with a menu prepared by Tim Austin, chef and owner at La Bonta Kyneton.
Local wineries Bull Lane, Jasper Hill, Paul Osicka, Foster e Rocco, Lo Stesso, Tellurian and Vinea Marson contributed wines that were matched with the Italian-themed food.
Most of the produce used in the menu came from local growers and farmers, which not only showcased the region but also maximised the proceeds going to the Heathcote Primary School program.
As part of the event, Sonia Anthony, a pastry chef at Mason’s in Bendigo, ran a cooking class with students in the program at Heathcote Primary preparing a baked lemon tart that was served as part of the dessert.
Items grown in the school garden were also used by the chefs.
President of the Heathcote Primary School Council and one of the organisers, Alison Phillips, said the program is about engaging kids in healthy eating.
“The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation Program has local kids at the primary school actively involved in growing vegetables and learning about cooking, healthy food and nutrition,’’ she said.
‘‘It is a great program and the funds raised will go into expanding and improving the program for local kids.
‘‘We have really been humbled by how many locals were keen to support and attend the event, as well as the chefs, producers, wineries and other local business that have been proactive in working in this collaborative event that is a real showcase for the region.
‘‘We are so lucky to be in a community where so many people are prepared to come together for an event that supports this great program.’’
As part of the event an auction was held with the highest priced item, a special one-off three litre bottle of 2016 Heathcote Shiraz, being purchased collectively for $1,000 by the patrons attending the lunch.
The bottle was opened then and there to toast the day.