First ‘Taste of Citrus Heights’ a Big Success for Women’s Club and CHPD

Citrus Heights, CA (MPG)  |  By Elise Spleiss
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The sold-out event brought 300 hungry and thirsty party goers to the community center to sample more than two dozen culinary, craft beer and local wine offerings from Citrus Heights and surrounding areas including Roseville, Auburn and Sacramento. -- Photo by Elise Spleiss

The first ‘Taste of” event in Citrus Heights which took place at the Citrus Heights Community Center on April 28 lived up to, and even surpassed its name on many levels. 
The sold-out event brought 300 hungry and thirsty party goers to the community center to sample more than two dozen culinary, craft beer and local wine offerings from Citrus Heights and surrounding areas including Roseville, Auburn and Sacramento.  Music, comedy, and a silent auction added to the festivities. Members of Citrus Heights City Council, Assemblyman Ken Cooley and former mayor of Citrus Heights, Sacramento County Supervisor Sue Frost were in attendance, enjoying the evening.

Pairing an already successful concept in fundraising with an urgent issue facing the Citrus Heights Police Department (CHPD), the ladies of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC) Citrus Heights Women’s Club, the CHPD and the community all came together to offer a solution to a problem in Citrus Heights.

Police Chief Ron Lawrence greeted the crowd, acknowledging how during his first year as police chief he has been impressed by the kindness and empathy of his officers and staff. However, he noted that the stress on all officers in law enforcement often leads to “a lot of self-medication, drinking, divorce and a high suicide rate.”  At the beginning of his term, Lawrence asked Commander Gina Anderson what the number one thing was they can do for their officers. She replied, “Appreciate them and take care of them.”

That is why funds raised from this event will be used to bring Dr. Kevin Gilmartin, author of “Emotional Survival for Law enforcement: A Guide for Officers and their Families” to Citrus Heights to present a workshop for all police officers, their families and the staff of the CHPD to be held in November.

The workshop will help officers understand and learn how to cope with the emotional “hypervigilance rollercoaster” they face every day. The goal is to help officers maintain healthy relationships and retire with many healthy years ahead of them. When a law enforcement team is healthy, their city is better served.

Along with the well-known restaurants like Benihana, Elephant Bar, and Sammy’s Restaurant and Bar, attendees discovered the smaller and more unique culinary offerings of their city they had no idea existed before this event.

Members of the CHWC spent months reaching out to restaurants large and small, especially those unique to the area like Kabob N Tikka. Other merchants and small businesses unfamiliar to many attendees until this night included Pezzo di Torta Italian bakery and Ben’s Huli Huli Chicken & Hawaiian Café.

The hard work paid off. Comments on Facebook following the event included, “Just WOW,”  “great variety,” “talk of the town,” “classy,” and “Great job for a great cause.”
To view photos, read the comments of attendees, and for a list of sponsors go to Facebook to “Taste of Citrus Heights 2017.”