Southside Block Party On June 5th To Benefit Salvation Army Chef Program

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Terra Mae Appalachian Bistro will host an outdoor celebration of Chattanooga’s Southside District from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, June 5. A portion ($5) of each ticket sold and 100% of proceeds from the raffle will go to the Salvation Army School of Culinary Arts to teach local homeless and low income persons the basic skills of meal preparation for entry into food service careers.

For $40 per person, 21 and over, the Southside Block Party will provide an opportunity to sample food and drinks from Chattanooga restaurants Terra Mae, 1885 Grill, Two Ten Jack, Feed Co. Table & Tavern and Carter Distributing. Their menus range from southern-inspired fare to coastal seafood to ramen & sushi. 

Terra Mae Manager L’Erin Chidester said Custom Street behind the StoneFort Inn will close to traffic that evening to give guests a chance to talk to the chefs and bartenders. The event will feature live music and games in a festival-type atmosphere. In addition to the stations outside, Terra Mae will have a cash bar inside.

“This event is about highlighting the talents on the Southside and nurturing that sense of community that Chattanooga is so well known for. We plan on having a great night of food and drinks. Stop in on your way over to Nightfall,” Ms. Chidester said.

Terra Mae Executive Chef Shelley Cooper said $5 of each ticket sold and 100% of proceeds from the raffle will go to the Salvation Army’s Culinary Arts Program. “This will give someone who has never had an opportunity a chance to learn life skills to get a job and realize a better way of life. The restaurants in Chattanooga’s Southside receive so much from the community, we feel it’s important to give back and address the problems of homelessness.”  The raffle will include a catered Terra Mae chef dinner & cooking demo for 10 people by Chef Shelley.

The Chattanooga Salvation Army's School of Culinary Arts is a life-changing, twelve-week job training/internship program. The students learn food and kitchen safety and sanitation, proper use of equipment including basic knife skills, cooking theory and techniques, serving methods, kitchen operations and even environmentally-friendly gardening. Through their lessons, the students begin to impart their own style and creativity to their dishes, allowing them to move from simply making food to taking the first step toward a rewarding culinary career.

Instructor Terry Epps, a Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef, consults with chefs and culinary instructors throughout Greater Chattanooga. He brings these experiences, skills and lessons into the lives of his students. "This is not only a program designed to teach each student the art of culinary, but this program is designed to change their lives by changing their circumstances through building character and confidence," said Chef Terry Epps.

The school assists them with securing full-time employment and permanent housing. Mr. Epps follows up to ensure continuing success. The program has a 92% graduation rate, said Gordon Hall, Community Relations Manager with the Chattanooga Salvation Army. The program costs $2,500 per student, which goes toward uniforms, knife kits, textbooks, and other materials that are kept after the program.

The Southside Block Party provides an opportunity to sample some of Chattanooga’s most delicious food and cocktails while helping this worthwhile program.

To purchase a ticket for the June 5th event, visit or call 423-710-2925. To learn more about the Chattanooga Salvation Army School of Culinary Arts, visit


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