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March 13, 2020

PCG’s co-founder on cancelling its symposium

The non-profit’s event is now in the red


After having to cancel the nonprofit’s annual symposium, the Piedmont Culinary Guild is working to minimize its losses from the nonprofit’s biggest event of the year.

The guild cancelled the symposium, scheduled for March 15, after host Johnson & Wales University decided to postpone all events expecting more than 50 people in attendance, due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus. Those who had purchased tickets were offered a full refund, or they could transfer the cost of their ticket to become a member of the PCG Tastemakers organization or donate the funds back to the guild. Piedmont Culinary Guild’s mission is to support local farmers, chefs, and foodways.

According to Kris Reid, PCG’s president, about a third of attendees decided to donate their money back to the guild. Because of the uncertainty surrounding when it will be safe for meeting en masse again, the event was cancelled instead of postponed. That means the hours spent to promote the event, the design and printing of merchandise and signage, and products for the luncheon are now lost expenses. Southminster Retirement Community has helped by taking on much of the food ordered for the event, and Johnson & Wales is not charging the guild for their costs associated with the event.

“They are like really working to do whatever they can for events that they’re having to cancel because obviously they understand the fact we’re a small nonprofit,” Reid says of JWU. Reid says they are discussing turning the panels — including one we were supposed to take part in, another we were to moderate — into standalone events for PCG members.

Reid says the non-profit is in the red about $3,500, but is hopeful the number will come down if more people decide to donate their ticket cost back to the nonprofit. If you’d like to contribute to the Piedmont Culinary Guild and support their mission, you can do so here.

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