JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska — Culinary arts specialist Soldiers assigned to E. Company, 1-207th Aviation Regiment, are competing in the 52nd annual Philip A. Connelly Program for Excellence in Army Food Service in a field environment, at Camp Carroll on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, March 2.
The Connelly Program began in 1968 and is an Army-wide competition seeking the year’s best field-feeding team throughout the Reserves, National Guard, and active-duty components.
The Alaska National Guard’s eight-person culinary team won the 2018 Pacific Northwest regional competition in the National Guard category, qualifying them to compete at the national level.
Alaska’s team will compete against the other National Guard regional winners, Massachusettes, Rhode Island, and Minnesota, with a menu that includes chicken parmesan, calico corn, spring salad, wheat rolls, chili, and pineapple upside-down cake.
The judges travel to each competing state to evaluate teams based on a points system that accounts for recipe adherence, sanitation, food safety, proper cooking techniques, field layout, culinary knowledge, and hospitality in a field environment.
The team will perform all required culinary duties using a mobile kitchen trailer, which reflects the realistic conditions of preparing meals and feeding troops in the field.
Due to restructuring, the culinary arts section residing within 1-207 Aviation will be absorbed into other support companies, making this their last opportunity to win the title for their current unit.