SPARTA, NJ - The cafeteria at Helen Morgan was transformed into an Italian Bistro last week as the PTO celebrated the 16th annual fourth grade Spaghetti Dinner. Decorated with ivy wall paper, white lights, Italian banners and Italian music softly playing in the background, the evening was an "unforgettable memory for our students," according to organizers.
“The Spaghetti Dinner is a wonderful, long-lasting Helen Morgan school tradition that brings families together for an evening of fun, fellowship and great food,” Principal Doug Layman said.
The evening was the result of much planning. The fourth grade students received training in the library about how to serve the meal to the families. The students donned chefs hats, vests, aprons and even mustaches as they took on the role of waiter and waitress. They used forms provided by PostNet in Lake Hopatcong to take their families' meal order.
On the menu that evening were spaghetti and meatballs, plain spaghetti or spaghetti with sauce, all donated by Villa Capri II. Additionally, salad and bread and chocolate chip cookies were donated by Eric's Deli & Catering.
Other desserts, mini cannolis and brownies were created by the Sussex County Technical School. Families could make reservations for seating at 5:30, 6:30 or 7:30 p.m.
Some of the music was provided by the Helen Morgan School Advanced Band led by Crystal Angderson. Professional photographer Rebecca Mancini Photography helped to commemorate the event.
Leah Andrini, Lilly Gretkowski, Brianna Mancini and Troy Maglin took on the role of host, not only serving food but seating the guests and taking charge of the salad, bread and drink tables.
"It was definitely a night to remember. The best part of the night was seeing the happy faces of the students as they served their families and enjoyed dinner together," event organizer Enza DeNicola said. "We couldn't have done it without the generous donations of Villa Capri II, Eric's Deli & Catering and without the help of all of our parent volunteers and of course the students."
Walmart, Weis, Stop & Shop, BJ's PostNet and Party World in Newton all donated to the evening according to DeNicola.
"We are very grateful to all of the donations and all fo the families that came out to support this event which helped up raise $1500 for the Helen Morgan PTO," DeNicola said.
The PTO will use the funds to help buy books and games for the library, author visits, provide assemblies and support the Explorations after school enrichment program for the students according to DeNicola.