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Tickets on sale for Lehigh Community Services Lobster Fest

January 16, 2019
By MEGHAN BRADBURY ( , Lehigh Acres Citizen

Tickets are on sale for the 8th annual Lobster Fest, a fundraiser that benefits the programs offered through Lehigh Community Services.

The Lobster Fest will be held Saturday, Feb. 16, at Quality Inn & Suites Banquet Room, 1320 Business Way in Lehigh Acres. Cocktails begin at 6 p.m., followed by a 7 p.m. dinner. Tickets are $60, or $50 for to-go orders.

The event has limited seating and reservations are required by calling (239) 369-5818, or emailing Those interested in purchasing a ticket, or a to-go meal must RSVP by Feb. 1.

There are also sponsorship opportunities available. The Lobster sponsor, $1,000, includes eight tickets and their logo and name in all advertising and banner displays at the event. The Clam sponsor, $750, includes six tickets and their name in all advertising and named at event. The Scallop sponsor, $500, includes four tickets and named in event signage. The Mussel sponsor, $250, includes two tickets and recognition at the event.

Lehigh Community Services Executive Director Carolyn Peplow said Lobster Fest is one of the organization's main fundraisers every year.

"Every not-for-profit has to have some means of raising a little money," she said, adding that Lobster Fest is one of the two big fundraisers they hold. "Lobster Fest is a good one."

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The meal includes 1-1/4 pound Maine lobster, sirloin steak, or half chicken. Other menu items include creamy clam chowder, Maine steamed clams, Maine mussels, baby red tomatoes, corn on the cob, hard boiled eggs, cole slaw, rolls, condiments and strawberry shortcake.

Peplow said they work with An Authentic Maine Lobster Bake. They go around and do these lobster bakes, complete with ordering the food from up north and having it sent to the particular location.

"There is a humongous cooker and they put all these menu items inside the cooker. It's beautiful to see how they lay it all out," Peplow said, adding that the cooker is closed for quite some time. "When it's done they open it up . . . all the lobsters are bright red and then they serve from there."

In addition to the lobster meal, she said they also offer chicken and steak to make sure there is a variety for everyone.

With the event only two days after Valentine's Day, Peplow thought it would be a great event for those who want a special dinner.

As far as the to-go plates, she said she works with the company and pick a certain time for the meals to be picked up.

"We box up the entire dinner," Peplow said, adding that the option is great for those who do not want to attend the actual event, but want to enjoy a lobster dinner.

In addition to the dinner, the event will have photo booths, 50/50s and music during the cocktail hour.

"It's a nice little night," Peplow said.

On average the event provides approximately $6,000 in profit for Lehigh Community Services.

"That money that is generated basically helps us for operating, food - we buy quite a bit of food, what we can't get from food banks and donations. It helps with our literacy and financial programs," Peplow said.

The food pantry is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

The literacy program is an adult English as a second language tutoring program.

"We have classes where we work with people who want to learn English," she said. "We do assessments through summer months when school is out and determine where they are level wise. There are six different levels, beginners on up."

When school begins in the fall, the classes begin and assessments are done again in the summer.

Currently Lehigh Community Services is working with 54 students. Due to the number of students, they worked out a partnership with Christ United Methodist Church to use their classrooms.

"We couldn't get all the classes situated in our building," Peplow said.

As far as the financial program, Lehigh Community Services helps mostly with utility bills. The program helps someone who has had a crisis and just needs that helping hand one month to make sure they are OK.

"A crisis can be different for every person. A broken down car, a new set of tires. We work with different individuals," Peplow said.

They also partner with the Department of Human Services to help people with their utility bills.

"Over the course of a month, we might work with anywhere from 30 to 40 families," she said.



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