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NEWAYGO, MI – The Ridge Dinner Series has rapidly become a local favorite that folks look forward to each summer. Treat yourself to a delicious catered meal and live entertainment on Camp Newaygo’s spacious patio, “on the ridge” overlooking picturesque Pickerel Lake. This summer’s theme is “Farm to Table” featuring meals handcrafted from local fare by Ridge Specialties Catering’s Executive Chef, Gary Strong. The “Ridge Dinner Series” at Camp Newaygo is in its fifth season this summer, and they have announced their three dates; June 20, July 18, and August 8. Cost for each event is $28 per person, except for the June 20th event where fathers are only $25 each, or the three-dinner series for only $80 per person.

On June 20, the event will feature a menu of Jack Daniels grilled BBQ ribs, hot German potato salad with bacon, grilled asparagus, classic Caesar salad, sweet homemade yeast rolls, and chocolate-covered strawberry pie. The special musical guest for the evening will be Sandra Bernard, and she knows her way around a guitar, having played since she was 18. Her love of music is evident in her style, and she loves to put her own bluesy flair to old retro favorites. Singing along is inevitable, and encouraged. The featured Community Partner for the June 20th event will be the Newaygo Middle and High School Art Club, who will be providing volunteer service-staff. Attendees may wish to make a donation to support the club.

The next dinner takes place on July 18 and features a menu of; chicken stuffed with apple and herb stuffing with white wine cream sauce, herb buttered Yukon golden potatoes, fresh green beans with almonds, harvest salad, sweet homemade yeast rolls, and Michigan apple pie a la mode. Local singer / songwriter, Don Benson will provide the evening’s entertainment. Don is a luthier, an artist, a jewelry maker, and an inventor. He also built his own house! Playing a variety of instruments, some of which he made himself, Don will pull you in with his wry sense of humor and musical storytelling.  The featured Community Partner for the July 18th event will be the Newaygo 4-H Club, who will be providing volunteer service-staff. Attendees may wish to make a donation to support the club.

Sponsored by Huntington Bank and wrapping up the series on August 8, the dinner will feature a menu of; shrimp and sausage boil with corn on the cob, redskin potatoes and sweet onions, garden salad, garlic and cheese biscuits, and New York style cheesecake topped with Michigan cherries. The entertainment for the Aug. 8th event will be Jim Patterson. Jim picked up the guitar in 1960 and has been performing ever since. Jim’s repertoire ranges from country to blues, and folk to rock with much more – from the 1940s to now. His show includes a variety of percussion instruments that he encourages audience members to pick up and play, and to sing along. No longer a working musician, he performs now to raise money to feed the hungry and donates his fees to the True North Food Pantry. If you are interested in hiring him to play at your event, contact him at (231) 924-3996 or via email at  The featured Community Partner for the August 8th event will be the Fremont Public School’s Rainforest group, who will be providing volunteer service-staff. Attendees may wish to make a donation to support this endeavor.

Each of these complete dinners will feature fresh local food, refreshing iced tea, and cool lemonade. An ice bucket and wine glasses are also provided at each table for guests who wish to bring their own beverages. Dietary restrictions may be met by contacting Camp Newaygo personnel prior to each event. Seating for each starts at 6:30 PM with dinner served at 7:00 PM. Attendance is limited to 150 people per night and is by RSVP only. Registrations forms are available at Camp Newaygo, at TrueNorth Community Services, or on-line at, or . Interested parties may also register be contacting Camp Newaygo at (231) 652-1184 or  

Attendees enjoying one of the Ridge Dinners from last year at Camp Newaygo.

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