The purpose of the event is to bring together Food and Beverage Industry Members to raise awareness and membership for the Omaha Restaurant Association as well as to build camaraderie within the Omaha Food and Beverage Industry. A member of the ORA is the host for the Membership Drive and puts out a great spread while members and potential members network. This event offers one of the best opportunities for ORA members to get to know each other in a casual setting. There is also a group Mixology contest where attendees form teams to develop their own signature cocktail. Some lucky attendees walk away with some great door prizes donated by generous members of the ORA.
2019 Annual Membership Drive Night Out
DJ’s Dugout again played perfect host to our 2019 Membership Drive/Industry Night Out. As winter reared its brutally cold hand outside, we escaped inside with a tropical island themed event and cocktail contest. The food took us to a warmer place with shrimp and carnitas tacos, tropical pb&j wings and sliders under a pineapple palm tree in an oasis of fruit. The mixology contest centered around rum. The competition consisted of five contestants: Joscelyn Ragone from Mercury, Kris Gholson from Trio, Rae Snyder from Tavern 180, James Bonefede from Wicked Rabbit, and Josh Nelson from Monarch Prime. The mixologists faced off in an “Iron Bartender” showdown. In the first round they were given three required ingredients and access to a community pantry. They created three identical cocktails for the judging panel and one large batch to be judged by the attendees as the crowd favorite. Josh Nelson and James Bonefede triumphed with their first round cocktails and moved on to a head to head showdown on stage. They were given the featured ingredient of BANANAS and 15 minutes to create the best BANANA cocktail possible. Along the way they were thrown some surprise challenges and the two demonstrated incredible skill and creativity. A close contest ended with James Bonefede as the victor with his BANANA and Nutella Creations. Rae Snyder won crowd favorite with his coconut concoction.
The Industry Night Out is the ORA’s event focused entirely on our members and offers a fun way to network and enjoy an evening out with peers. We thank everyone who contributed to making this another successful event and look forward to doing it again in 2020!