The Riverbank High School culinary students engaged in a field trip to San Francisco last month with a hands-on culinary experience at AT&T Park. Food and Nutrition Instructor Emily Cowdrey and 30 of her students traveled to the ball park on a rainy Tuesday a few weeks ago to learn about the food system and plants grown on site.
Park staff accommodated the class due to the rain so the students cooked in the concession stands instead of out in the open. They did a lesson in the garden on the food system. They also participated in a cooking class where they made a salad and dressing as well as “plant parts” pizza with toppings that were parts of the plant. The students learned about the parts of a plant and the different varieties in the AT & T garden.
“We also ate things out of the garden,” stated Cowdrey. “My favorite comment from a teacher that went with me last year and came again said that she noticed last time students were not interested in trying anything from the garden and the students that came this time were trying everything and picking things and eating it. It was great to see. I have been pushing hard for that in my class with our own garden.”
Recently added at the ball park was a new soft serve ice cream maker and the students got to be the first taste testers. Head Engineer Jesus Saldana Jr. and his team added the new soft serve machine. Saldana is a Riverbank alum and made it a point to take some time to talk with the visiting RHS students about his role and responsibilities at the park as well as careers in sustainability.
“We had such a great time,” said Cowdrey, noting that having a Riverbank High graduate in the park and having him take the opportunity to meet with the local students was a bonus.
“Being able to take the students to the city and see them interact with each other” was also a fun part of the trip, said Cowdrey.
After spending a few hours at the garden and ball park, the class made its way to the Ferry Building where they got to spend a little time.