Helping to unfurl the SCHindig banner advertising the May 19 community event at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy are, from left to right: Stephen Skeel, Tim Menninger, Rachael Carter, and Caroline Martin.

by Deidra A. Lyngard

The heat was still on in the Springside Chestnut Hill Academy kitchen last Wednesday night as local four-star chef David Jansen and his team of SCH Academy students tested recipes for the SCHindig Burger Brawl Challenge on Saturday, May 19th.

The challenge—pitting the culinary creativity of several Chestnut Hill area chefs—is one of the many featured events at SCH Academy’s springtime family fundraiser, which is free and open to the community.

In addition to Jansen, former top chef at the Four Seasons’ Fountain Restaurant, John Arena, chef at Chestnut Hill Grill, and Al Paris, chef at the new Heirloom restaurant, will also be participating in the SCHindig cook off, along with SCH Academy’s President Priscilla Sands and Head of School Frank Steel. The chefs will work with their student teams to prepare and serve the burgers. Tasters will have an opportunity to vote for the “best burger.” The winning team will receive $2,000 to donate to its favorite charity.

Other features of this family-oriented afternoon will include a boot that advertises Summerside on the Hill summer camps, robotics and science demos, and a student “genius bar” where you can get your knottiest tech question answered. There will also be a carnival with lots of games, including a photo booth, moon bounces, and a giant inflatable slide for even the oldest “kids” in the family.

If you’ve got a hankering to clear out your closets of used but still serviceable shoes and athletic equipment, you can bring them to SCHindig. Students will donate your athletic equipment to the Philadelphia Youth Organization to support its inner-city sports leagues. In exchange for your gently used shoes, you will receive a flower, herb, or veggie seedling in thanks from the Eco Club. The shoes will go to areas in need around the world to seed microenterprises.

At 1 pm, Miss Pennsylvania USA 2007 Samantha Johnson will take the stage as MC for an hour-long talent showcase featuring students of all ages eager to share their skills with an appreciative audience. Acts will include singing duets, comedy sketches, original songs, juggling, pop dancing, rapping, instrumental selections, country songs, and more.

Beginning at 2 pm, young Philly phenomenon, Tayyib Ali, will “rap” up the afternoon program with a family-friendly performance of some of his popular songs.

“After a busy and very productive first year of our school merger, we’re ready to celebrate,” said President Dr. Priscilla Sands. “Our parents and students have worked hard to put this event together, and they are eager to share the fun with the larger community. So please bring your family, and enjoy this great afternoon with us.”