October 1, 2012
Metropolitan State University of Denver
Hospitality All Stars event serves up memorable evening
|Gov. John Hickenlooper and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock serve up drinks at the Hospitality All Stars event at Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center on Sept. 27, 2012.|
The more than 400 people who attended Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Hospitality All Stars fundraiser on Sept. 27 were treated to a smorgasbord that included more than just (great) food from some of Denver’s top chefs.
Attendees could meander throughout the University’s dazzling new Hospitality Learning Center (HLC) and the SpringHill Suites Denver Downtown and have a governor or a big-city mayor pour them a drink, attend a wine talk with a master sommelier, take in an art history lecture, shoot baskets with a former Denver Nugget or listen to the jazz stylings of the MSU Denver faculty jazz quartet.
And in true learning-lab style, the event—a fundraiser for the HLC—was staffed and staged by MSU Denver faculty, students and alumni.
“The event has been a tremendous success,” said Sandra Haynes, dean of MSU Denver's School of Professional Studies. “It’s a veritable who’s who of Denver here.”
Thirsty patrons eager to get served cocktails by public servants could get a Metropolitan—a martini made of clementine vodka and cranberry juice—mixed and poured by Gov. John Hickenlooper, who also demonstrated his ability to catch cherries with his mouth. Or, they could get a St. Bernard—a concoction of Pig’s Nose scotch, dry vermouth and fresh pineapple juice—served up by amateur mixologist Denver Mayor Michael Hancock.
Both politicos took time out of their busy schedules to help raise money and awareness for the HLC, which opened in August.
“One of the great challenges of Denver and Colorado is connecting the Auraria Campus and MSU Denver to downtown Denver,” Hickenlooper said. “What better way to do that than take an institution like the Hospitality Learning Center and immerse them in downtown. What a gift.”
“I have always been proud of MSU Denver,” Hancock said. “What they do here—educating urban kids—they’re incomparable. And this is an impressive learning lab. This is, to me, the stuff that greatness is made of.”