Metro Parks, Regence BlueShield to dedicate new Mobile Teaching Kitchen

Eastside Community Center

Metro Parks, Regence BlueShield to dedicate new Mobile Teaching Kitchen

Mobile kitchen will be unveiled March 7 and will address local ‘food deserts’

Thanks to a partnership with Regence BlueShield, Metro Parks Tacoma will soon be rolling its new Mobile Teaching Kitchen into neighborhoods to offer healthy cooking classes.

“The programs in our teaching kitchens at STAR Center and Eastside Community Center are very popular. Our new Mobile Teaching Kitchen enables us to bring those experiences with healthy food to more people in the community by going to where they are,” said Tim Reid, president of the Board of Park Commissioners. “People of all ages and backgrounds can learn healthy cooking options and share cultural cooking experiences. We are grateful for Regence BlueShield’s generous support of this innovative new program.”

The community will dedicate the Mobile Teaching Kitchen with comments from Metro Parks and Regence leaders, as well as a cooking demonstration, at 10 am on Saturday, March 7 at Eastside Community Center. The dedication coincides with Eastside Community Center’s Seuss’s Spring Fling, a family-friendly celebration of Dr. Seuss’s birthday.

For Regence BlueShield, sponsoring the Mobile Teaching Kitchen is the latest chapter in the company’s long legacy of giving back to the communities of Tacoma and Pierce County. Regence was founded in Tacoma 103 years ago, and more than a century later it is one of the county’s largest employers and more committed to the community than ever.

“We believe strongly in the health and well-being of Tacoma and Pierce County residents,” said Regence BlueShield President Tim Lieb. “The Mobile Teaching Kitchen will help address food insecurity and food inequity by empowering families with healthy eating classes in their neighborhoods.”

The custom-built, 26-foot trailer features room for a group of people to prepare and cook a variety of foods. The distinctive mural that wraps the whole trailer was designed by two park district employees: graphic designer Natalie Ries and Leah Martin, a customer service representative at Eastside Community Center who lives in that neighborhood.

“We are hiring instructors and developing programs that show how simple and healthy making from-scratch dishes at home can be,” said Ralph Thomas, a Metro Parks supervisor overseeing the new program. “Those classes will cover diabetes prevention, cooking to lower cholesterol, creating cooking on a budget, and cultural cooking, among other things. We will have more details about those programs beginning at the March 7 dedication.”

Event Details

  • What: Mobile Teaching Kitchen dedication
  • When: 10 am, Saturday, March 7, 2020
  • Where: Eastside Community Center, 1721 E 56th St., Tacoma

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Media Contact: 

Hunter George, Metro Parks Tacoma, (253) 305-1065; hunterg@tacomaparks.com

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