March Newsletter Print

President's Report

Hello NACE Community,

March is a special month for us as we host our annual fundraiser.  I happened by a great article on "The Importance of Giving Back to the Community".   This quote really stood out to me:

"Giving back is among the most important and valuable things an entrepreneur can do. Period."
author unknown
see full article:

Giving back is not really about receiving something.  It is just about doing the right thing, creating that wonderful energy that can comes back to shine a light on you and make you feel all warm inside.  We are very blessed in our NACE Community to have wonderful members who are so giving and be surrounded by others in the Industry.  It is that time to give back and support our chosen beneficiary, Moveable Feast (  Our fundraising committee has done an excellent job of putting together an exciting event boasting culinary and beverage trends.  Of course, there are other fun elements as we do know how to throw a great party!

Hope to see everyone there!

Sherri Griffis, CPCE, CMP, President
Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, Director of Catering Sales


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Community Service

We are looking forward to seeing you all at our fundraiser event on 3/21 and so we will be taking a short break this month for Community Service. We are interested in hearing from you… what community service projects/charities would you like to see us involved with? Looking forward to your suggestions. Please email me directly with your ideas at [email protected]


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Membership Specials & Welcome New Members

Please welcome!

Lauren Williams, NACE

Katie Conley, Catering Sales Manager at Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore

Kristin Wienold, Vice President of Operations

Emily Williams, Catering Manager at Maryland Club

Martha Olney, Senior Catering Sales Manager at Restaurant Associates

Starvel Drake, Pop Bliss

Member Benefits:

Did you know that if you are a member of NACE, Creative Coverings offers a 10% discount off speciality linen orders? Go here to check to view more member benefits.


New Member Orientation

If you are a new member, thinking about joining, or just want to learn more about NACE, join us on Monday, May 16th at 5:30pm right before the NACE meeting. We will be going over the benefits of being a member and how you can become more involved to get the most out of your membership. If you have any questions, please contact me at [email protected].

 Meeting Price Changes 

One of our goals as chapter leaders of NACE is to improve member benefits so more Baltimore catering and event professionals will join our chapter to move their careers and businesses forward. Because of this goal, our pricing structure for non members has changed slightly. If you decide to become or already are a Baltimore NACE member, you will now save $20 per meeting if you sign up during the early bird special. That is a 33% savings just for being a member! This savings was previously only $10 per meeting. Early bird member pricing remains the same for members, but the differential for non-members has increased. These prices will go into effect for the April meeting.



Early Bird


At Door


(current price)




Member (new price)





(current price)





(new price)




 Because of this change, now is an even better time to join NACE if you are not already a member! If you would like to join our chapter and take advantage of these savings, go here. If you are still not ready to take that next step, we look forward to seeing you at the next meeting as a non member. If you have any questions about this pricing change, please feel free to contact Baltimore NACE Chapter President, Sherri Griffis at [email protected]. If you have any questions about membership and all of the amazing benefits you will gain from joining our chapter, please feel free to contact me directly at [email protected].

 Day-of Meeting Payments

 If you are typically a walk in for meetings or pre-register, but pay at the door, please note that we will no longer accept credit cards. You must pay with cash/check. If you must pay with a credit card, you will need to do so online before the deadline. This policy will go into effect at the April meeting.

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Member Spotlight

Member Spotlight: Vickie Preston, Director of Sales-Baltimore at Entertainment Exchange 


Vickie started her business, Sounds Perfect Entertainment, in 1997 and immediately joined the Baltimore Chapter of NACE.  Then seven years later merged her company 

with the Entertainment Exchange giving her more time to do what she loved working on events and not the administrative end.  Prior to that she worked for CSX Intermodal for five years working for the VP of Sales coordinating all of their client functions for their various regions which included handling all of the catering, entertainment, hotel accommodations, golf tournaments, etc. and became hooked on the hospitality industry.  Her favorite part about the industry is being able to work with top notch professionals with the same goal in mind and that is to make someone happy.

 Having been a member of NACE for now for 19 years and serving 17 years on the Baltimore Board she still believes joining and staying active in NACE was the best decision she made and attributes her success over the years to the continued education it offered and to the opportunity to make so many strong relationships in the industry.  She also was honored to received the National Affiliate Member of the Year as well as the George Zell Award and locally was honored with the Noble Award. 

In her spare time she enjoys sailing and gardening, but mostly spending time with her husband, Walter, of 27 years and her daughter, son and mother along with fun times with their close friends sharing wonderful meals and great laughs.

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Program Recap

One of the most highly anticipated meetings of the year is the annual spin on “What’s Hot and What’s Not” presented by Petra Compel and Andrew Zill. The 2016 version did not disappoint!

The Baltimore Marriott at Camden Yards was this month’s host, and despite a President’s Day snow shower we were able to meet a day late … although Petra became a one-woman show as Andrew was unable to attend due to a prior engagement.

Hors d’oeuvres included Goat Cheese on Fig Crostini; Macaroni & Cheese Bites; Chesapeake Crab Cake with Citrus Remoulade; and Harissa Lamb Meatballs with Pickled Red Onions.

The Program featured Event Designer Petra Compel’s “What’s Hot, What’s Not” predictions for 2016. The 45 minute presentation touched on design and décor, food … even venues. Sadly, the big barn wedding trend is on the decline. The overall message for the millenials … choices! Food mashups are on the rise, and many great cuisine ideas include combinations you would never expect, such as mixing Chinese and Italian in the same dish. How about ice cream sundae bars? Yummy. Bloody Mary bars with many ingredients.

The 2016 colors … pretty much baby blue and pink, which looks awesome at a baby shower, but could potentially be challenging in social events. Petra suggested “amping” up the colors into bolder Cobalts and Fuschias, and even suggesting that lighting could really help to create this as well. Another interesting color trend is in flatware, as rose gold is making a splash. Some others trends included signature drinks being on the way out, including Vodka Mules, but Whiskey and Bourbon drinks on the rise. Petra really did captivate the audience and I am sure she only barely touched everything that might happen in 2016!

The meal portion following the program was really off the charts! Dinner stations included Butternut Squash-Apple-Crab Bisque Shooters; Chef Crafted Grilled Cheese; Winter Greens and Pear Maple Croutons; Roasted Atlantic Cod, Brussel Sprouts, Citrus Cream; Braised Veal Cheeks, Port Wine, Cauliflower Puree; and Chef’s Indulgent Sweets .

Many thanks to all of our sponsor vendors: Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards (Cindy Baucom); Washington Talent Agency (Brian Morse; The Dynasty DJs, Zack Higgins); Ashley Michelle Photography (Ashley Sullivan); Innovative Party Planners (Heidi Hiller); Party Plus Tents & Events (Lauri Dixon); Millennium Marketing Solutions (Debra May).

We look forward to seeing you at our Fundraiser on March 21, 2016 at The Grand … it’s “Four Chefs and A Pairing!”


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Fundraising & Raffle Recap


The Baltimore NACE Annual Fundraiser benefitting Moveable Feast is quickly approaching. The night will include local celebrity chef cooking demos, paired cocktails, live entertainment, the largest raffle of the year and much more! For more information, tickets and raffle prize information please visit the event webpage or Facebook page.

 Website -

Video -

Facebook -

Tickets -


Food & Beverage

Chef Egg, Miss Shirley’s, Schola, The Pantry Catering, La Cakerie, The Classic Catering People, Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, Eleven Courses, Manor Tavern, The Grand, Barr Hill Gin, Breakthru Beverage Group, Full Tilt Brewing, The Wine Bin, Innovative Gourmet

 Décor & Entertainment

AFR Event Furnishings, Select Event Group, Vanlandingham Design Studios, Rutland Beard Florist, Flowers & Fancies, Entertainment Exchange, Maryland Productions, Washington Talent Agency

 Graphic Design & Printing

AOL Designs, Formost Events & Productions

 Photography & Videography

Jennifer McMenamin Photography, Michael Temchine Photography, Washington Executive Photographic Services, Zinnia Films

 Please also extend your thanks to the committee that put this event together…

April Lichtenberg, Brian Morse, David Egan, Drew Vanlandingham, Jodi Radebaugh, John Paul Berry, ken Stern, Lauri Dixon, Lexi Schaffer, Mark Henry, MaryKaye DiUbaldo, Petra Compel, Rachel Clinton, Rachel Hoffberger, Samantha Flottemesch, Sherri Griffis

 See you on the 21st,


Mary Carballo                                       Terry Lombardi

Fundraising Co-Chair                            Fundraising Co-Chair

AFR Event Furnishings                             Manor Tavern


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