It takes a lot to feed a crowd. Now imagine if that crowd is well over 5,000 people who need breakfast, lunch and dinner over the course of a weekend.
It comes to nine meals for each athlete, coach and official who registers for the Maple Ridge 2020 BC Summer Games.
Director of food services Lorraine Hugil notes that although it’s still early days for the food organization side of the Games, a committee is in place to see that the communal breakfast and dinner meals are organized, as well as the lunches, which will need to be packaged and delivered to the different venues.
“I was a food and beverage director at hotels in my early career, so I have probably a decade or more of that,” Hugil says.
She is part of the team at Alouette Addictions Services. She and her family have lived in Maple Ridge for 13 years, so she knows the community well when it comes to venues and a lot of the logistics the food committee will be dealing with.
She’s still working on the math to help her determine a more accurate count of the number of meals the committee will be providing.
“We’ll be responsible for serving them breakfast for all of those event days, as well as shipping lunches to all of the event venues themselves [and dinner],” she explains.
“So that’s an awful lot of meals. We’ll have one central location where all of the athletes will be [bussed to] and will come in and wait to have their breakfast. The same will happen for dinner.”
She reached out to the director of food services from the Ridge Meadows 1998 BC Summer Games and learned that a local high school had been used for the communal meals and for the preparation of the Tupperware-packed meals to be delivered to coaches and others at the various venues for lunch.
“So we may be looking at something like that, but I’m not sure yet what that venue will be,” she says.
With so many different dietary restrictions, food organizers need to be prepared for those needing vegetarian meals, gluten-free meals, nut-free meals and other options.
Participants, coaches and officials will be able to specify their dietary requirements when they register for the BC Summer Games online.
That makes Hugil’s life a little easier in that the food committee will know the necessary dietary requirements in advance. Then, it will take special planning and coordination to make sure the right meals make it to the right venues for the people who requested them. That’s no small feat when dealing with more than 5,000 meals and sporting competitions happening concurrently.