Hot Lunch at ACS is a Community Event

Posted in Alumni News

Here’s What’s Served Up at Hot Lunch: Great Food and Close Community


Scratch-made macaroni and cheese.  Herbed chicken with butter pasta.  Linguine with meatballs, and a dash of cinnamon that brings warmth to a red sauce.

These aren’t meals at your favorite Italian place.  These are hot lunches at Assumption Catholic School (ACS).

Richard Balogh, chef and owner of Rifugio’s Country Italian Cuisine on the Mount Baker Highway, started the most recent hot lunch program at ACS.  Richard and his wife, Candice, have one student at ACS and one who has graduated.

For the past five years, great food has been served up once a month, a gathering made possible under the big school-community tent called the Parent-Teacher Club.  And, what does it take to serve?  A chef with a passion for great food; a baker who creates delicious desserts and cheerfully organizes the team—Rob Viggers; and a team of volunteers.

Thanks to Richard and Candice, the warmth of their restaurant, Rifugio’s—which means refuge or sanctuary—is brought to the ACS gym.

Parent Lacey Young joins her daughter for lunch.  Lacey brings along her sister, another busy mom, to enjoy an entree, fresh salad, and dessert for $6.50.

And lunch isn’t just for students and their families.  Alumni join children and grandchildren for a meal and a community gathering.

Tom Lockhart, with his wife Ann, sent his boys to ACS, and now enjoys lunches with his grandchildren.  Tom said, “Great food.  And, we all get to be here, at this school!”

At food prep, cooking, serving, and clean-up, volunteers trade stories about what it means—in Tom Lockhart’s words—to be at this school.

Jennifer Stiff talks about her children being in a close community ACS and also about her days of making scratch-made pasta.

Kevin Streeter and John Stimson keep clean-up crew on pace, with their speed at sprayer and dishwasher, along with diligence about not flooding the kitchen.


Do you have a cherished memory at ACS, like this one, that resonates Christ’s hospitality?  We’d love to hear from you!  Tell us your story at