Eugen Baer, dean of Hobart College has served HWS students for three decades as a professor of philosophy, adviser and mentor. On Sunday, Feb. 22, Dean Baer will serve residents of the Finger Lakes as their waiter for the evening -one of six “celebrity guest waiters” taking part in Madderlake Café’s benefit dinner for local food banks.
Madderlake will be donating a percentage of its sales and all gratuities for the evening to the two charities. Because the café is between Penn Yan and Geneva, they chose to share proceeds with both Milly’s Pantry in Penn Yan and the Center of Concern in Geneva. The Center of Concern is a food pantry and retail store that provided meals for 3,540 families in 2008.
Baer’s shift will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. and people are encouraged to request a specific waiter when making reservations (to do so, call 315-781-2424) as there will be a competition among waiters to see who raised the most funds. Other guest waiters include Geneva’s Mayor Stu Einstein, Dustin Cutler (owner/baker Normal Bread), John Martini (Anthony Road Wine Company), and Susan Atkisson (Keuka Lake Coffee Roasters).
As Dean, Baer serves as a member of the President’s senior staff and is responsible for monitoring students’ academic progress as well as advising student organizations and honor societies. He advocates for efforts to keep whole student development at the center of the Colleges’ mission by integrating academic, social and personal aspects of student life. He is also a member of the Academic Affairs Committee.
Baer, a native of Switzerland, earned a doctorate from Yale University in 1971 and has taught at HWS for 37 years. He routinely teaches courses in semiotics (the study of signs), philosophy of language and European studies. He speaks 13 languages, tutored the Swiss Guard at the Vatican and trained as an Olympic downhill skier.
Before coming to HWS, he received a licentiate degree in theology from the University of Freiburg, Switzerland, and a Baccalaureatus Biblicus from the Biblical Institute in Rome in 1966.
An article about the upcoming event appeared in the Finger Lakes Times newspaper and follows.
Finger Lakes Times
MadderLake benefit will help feed many
Area ‘celebs’ will wait tables as part of fundraiser
By Amanda Folts • February 16, 2009
GENEVA – If you eat at the MadderLake Café next Sunday, make sure you tip big.
Because those gratuities, and a portion of the day’s profits, will be going to two local food pantries.
MadderLake owners Laura Kudla and Scott Snyder wanted to stage a benefit that featured their passion for food and decided the proceeds should go to the Center of Concern in Geneva and Milly’s Pantry in Penn Yan.
Serving the meals will be a group of “celebrity” waiters, including Mayor Stu Einstein, Hobart and William Smith Colleges Dean Eugen Baer, John Martini of Anthony Road Wine Co. and Susan Atkisson of Keuka Lake Coffee Roasters.
“We’re all about food here, and we thought that one of the big needs in the community is food for people who are having a hard time, so we thought that if we could provide some of that for them that would be great,” Snyder said.
They chose the Center of Concern because it has seen a great need over the years and is one of the better known pantries in the area, Kudla said. Milly’s Pantry was chosen because it is just getting off the ground, has a desire to serve the community and has established a Main Street business to support its pantry. It also has a backpack program, which gives kids food for the weekend and gets them ready for school the next week.
“We wanted to make this event not about us. We wanted to make it about the nonprofits,” Kudla said, explaining that they hope people will still reach out to the charities even if they can’t make it to the benefit dinner.
There will be a separate competition among the waiters to see how much money they can raise, so people are encouraged to request their waiter when making reservations.
Food donations also will be accepted at the event and taken to the Center of Concern afterward. Requested items include hot and cold cereal, elbow macaroni, spaghetti, canned spaghetti sauce, peanut butter, boxed macaroni and cheese, hearty soups and canned meats.
Kudla said they hope to raise at least $500 for each charity.
Bejo Seeds in Geneva is also donating fresh produce for the benefit.
If you go …
MadderLake Café’s celebrity waiter benefit will be begin at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 22. Guests will be seated until 8:30 p.m.
The restaurant is at 5286 Route 14S. To make a reservation, call 781-2424.