Dinner in the Barn

Aug 30, 2019

I saw this photo (above) on Instagram and thought, “We could do that in our barn!”

I asked the Kindred volunteers if anyone would like to stage our barn for a romantic dinner in the barn and Sandy Smith put up her hand!  A chef from Chris’ dragon boat team, Joyce May, offered to create and donate a plant-based gourmet dinner, and Rob Sturgess donated his time and expertise (he worked for Nikon for 20 years) to be our photographer for this dinner. 


In July, Sandy did a mock-up of the dinner for a photoshoot.  We wanted a photo to help promote the dinner.  The photoshoot included: two of the original dishes by Chef Joyce, Sandy’s amazing staging centred around a gorgeous chandelier, our volunteer team did a deep clean of the barn, Sandy in complete chef attire (Joyce didn’t want her photo taken), and Ray Charles complete with bow tie.

What I didn’t expect was Rob bringing his professional lighting equipment, several tripods, and cameras.  This was not going to be your average photo on an iPhone.  The stage was set, chandelier and candles lit (battery operated), food prepared, Ray Charles ready and willing, and lights, camera, action.

Sandy Smith staging the mockup
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess

Then it was time to see if anyone was interested in purchasing a raffle ticket to win dinner in the barn for up to 4 people. Well, we sold 45 tickets and raised $1125! Pretty good for a first-time event.

Ray is ready for the guests to arrive
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess

The raffle was won by Cyndy Omand of Kelowna.  She booked the dinner for Sunday, August 18th and invited her two daughters, Ashley & Katelyn.  She asked Chris, Dawn or I if we would like the fourth seat.  Instead, I offered it to everyone who had bought raffle tickets with the first to reply winning the 4th seat.  Colleen Kerr won the spot.

Cyndy Oman & Henrietta
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess
Let’s get this party started
Photo Credit: Winston Conyers
Katelyn, Emmy Lou, Colleen, Ashley, Louise, Cyndy, Henrietta
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess

Maitre d’ Ray Charles & assistant Lady Antebellum
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess
Elvis born with a tux & an attitude
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess
Bond, James Bond
Servers Winston & Matthew with Lady Antebellum
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess
To top off the evening, a campfire on a gloriously warm summer night
Photo Credit: Winston Conyers

This was one of the highlights of my summer!  This amazing event was hosted by:

Staging: Sandy Smith
Food: Chef Joyce May
Photography: Rob Sturgess
Waiters: Winston Conyers & Matthew Taylor
Maitre d’: Ray Charles
Barn prep & cleanup: Kindred Volunteers
Dish cleanup: Gail Visser
Wine: Keryn & Buzz Denroche

One of a kind menu
Truffle fries in waffle cone served in the garden while visiting the animals

Tomato Gazpacho & Green Gazpacho with Celery Sorbet
Photo Credit: Rob Sturgess

Orange, Fennel & Cashew Salad with Date Leather & Lemon Dressing
Paired with Chaberton Estate Bacchus

Zucchini, Mango and Soba Noodle Salad
Paired with Mission Hill Pinot Blanc

Coconut Curry with Cardamom Rice & Tomato & Pomegranate Salad and Chilli Lime Corn
Paired with La Mascota Cabernet Sauvignon

Fruit Sorbet with Whipped Ganache
Paired with Wild Goose Autumn Gold