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Taste Budz dinner to help Good Samaritan celebrate life; Cookie Creations kick off Girl Scouts booth sales

Sue Guinn Legg • Updated Feb 7, 2018 at 9:44 PM

Downtown Johnson City's Taste Budz will bring its popular Southern-style cuisine to Good Samaritan Ministries Saturday night, Feb. 10, for a Valentine's-themed dinner to benefit the ministry's Celebrate Life program.

Over the past year, Good Samaritan’s quarterly Celebrate Life birthday parties have grown to include average crowds of 50 to 100 people who come to ministry for cake, gifts, a good meal, music and a message to celebrate their lives.

Program organizer Doris Kaifa, a social worker at the ministry, said the parties are designed “to lift people up, give them hope, show them the love of Christ, put God back into the community and to bring the community together to celebrate life.”

And they have grown so popular that the ministry hopes to expand the program to celebrate anniversaries and other major life events as well.

To make the expansion possible, the Taste Budz dinner will include baked chicken with peppers and onions, pork tenderloin with cornbread stuffing, Southern-style green beans, potatoes, garden salad and Taste Budz’ scrumptious cakes.

Live music will be provided by singers Eli Quintero and 13-year-old Louise Gbba with International Christian Church. Deborah DeFrieze, director of Christian counseling for Good Samaritan, will be the speaker.

The “black- and red-tie affair” will also include an auction of Valentine’s Day-themed gift baskets and DJ music for those who wish to dance.

Admission is a suggested $35 donation to the ministry earmarked for Celebrate Life.

The party starts at 6 in the community room at Good Samaritan Ministries located downtown at at 100 N. Roan Str.

Those who wish to attend are asked to RSVP by 3:30 p.m. Friday by calling Kaifa at the ministry at 423-557-8438.

It’s Girl Scout cookie season and Girl Scouts of Southern Appalachian are planning a first-time event for Johnson City to kick off the girls’ cookie booth sales at retail outlets across the Tri-Cities.

Cookie Creations, an evening of Girl Scouts cookie-inspired dishes by the chefs at the Johnson City Country Club and a flight of craft beers from Johnson City Brewing Company infused with hints of the Girl Scouts’ most-popular cookie flavors, will be held at the county club Saturday night, Feb. 24.

While the complete menu has not yet been divulged, it will include an apple layer dish made with the Girl Scouts’ signature Trefoils shortbread cookies, and other recipes contributed by “Appalachian Foodways” author Fred Sauceman.

Johnson City Brewing Company will create a flight of four custom beers paired with flavors from the Girl Scouts’ popular Thin Mints, Tagalongs peanut butter patties, Savannah Smiles powder sugar lemon cookies and Samoa chocolate, coconut and caramel delights.

The East Tennessee State University Celtic Band will be playing. The featured speakers will be Jennifer Axsom Adler, a former Girl Scout, current Kingsport alderman and director of the Roan Scholars program at East Tennessee State University; and Girl Scout Abigail Jack, a freshman at Elizabethton High School.

Proceeds will go to the Girl Scouts’ council to help build the scouts’ leadership skills for the future and to add to the considerable impact they are making today through service projects to their community.

The event starts at 6 p.m. at the Country Club at 1901 E. Unaka Ave. For tickets or more information call Haowei Claire Tong, area director of the Girl Scouts council, at 800-474-1912, ext. 1013.

If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at 423-722-0538 or P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605.

Email Sue Guinn Legg at slegg@johnsoncitypress.com. Follow her on Twitter @sueleggjcpress. Like her on Facebook at facebook.com/sueleggjcpress.

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