Annual Grilled Cheese Showdown

Submitted by Orcas Island Education Foundation.

The Orcas Island Education Foundation invites you to the (delayed) 4th Annual Grilled Cheese Showdown. Our last Showdown was several weeks before the 2020 COVID shutdown. And now we are back!

This family-friendly fundraiser takes place on Thursday, Feb. 15 starting at 5 p.m. in the public-school cafeteria. Your admittance entitles you to soup and six grilled cheese sandwich tastings. (Note: each “taste” is a quarter of a sandwich — so you will be enjoying a sandwich and a half of deliciousness.) There will also be a fabulous bake sale _ treats by donation. And don’t forget – YOU get to vote for the winning sandwich.

We have six chefs/teams. Starting with Amanda Zimlich, a Culinary Institute of America grad, with years of restaurant/culinary experience. She calls herself “a chef in hiding” who now owns and runs Otters Pond Bed and Breakfast.

We have three teams: one from the Orcas Hotel, one from Olga Rising, and one from the NEW Orcas Bakery: “Orcas Bakery says they are excited to support OIEF by serving some delicious Lum Farm gouda melted into freshly baked Orcas Bakery bread.”

Finally, we have two “home chef” teams: Laura Holding and Kevin Ranker: “We’re Wonder bread with unknown cheeses on the grill of a 1967 El Camino in August in Barstow CA sort of cooks…not chefs.” And last, but not least, home chef Baird Nuckolls, who started coming to Orcas 25 years ago and moved here full time in 2020 with her husband. She was a pastry chef in California in a previous life and she loves any kind of toast, particularly a grilled cheese.

All proceeds will benefit the Orcas Island Education Foundation, whose mission is to support our public schools. Tickets are available at the High School, and online: The cost is $15 for adults and kids over 13, $5 for kids under 13. There are two seatings 5 – 6 p.m. and 6 – 7 p.m. Some limited tickets will be available at the door.