LaGrange native to host Krawfish for Kids

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 12, 2015

Spencer Ellen called LaGrange home for 17 years.

The city is where he got his first taste of the restaurant industry, starting at age 14 while working as a dish washer at Jim Bob’s Chicken Fingers. His passion continued to grow when he became a line cook at the Highland Country Club.

Now, Ellen is a chef at the Acre restaurant in Auburn, Alabama, but said LaGrange still holds a special place in his heart.

That is why when Ellen started making plans to host his own charity event, he immediately decided to return to his roots.

“I wanted to do something to give back to my home town and give back to the people who gave me my start,” Ellen said.

His event, called Krawfish for Kids, will give folks a taste of southern cuisine while helping the Boys and Girls Club of West Georgia.

“Children are the next generation, and I want to invest in them,” said Ellen. “Growing up, I had teachers and coaches that invested in me. Later, I had chefs that took me under my wing. The Boys and Girls Club is actively reaching out to positively help kids.”

The mouthwatering menu for the Krawfish for Kids has a variety of Louisiana-inspired cuisine: crawfish, sausage and a traditional jambalaya.

The event will also have plenty of activities for families, including a bounce house for kids, music by Charlie Mancaster, raffles and even a corn hole tournament.

“It’s going to be a quality event to bring families to. There will be games, entertainment and all you can eat food,” said Bart McFadden, chief operating officer of the Boys and Girls Clubs of West Georgia. “While enjoying a great night, you can help needs in our community, help kids and give them an opportunity to have a great future.

“We’ve been in an aggressive, urgent pattern of growth in the recent years,” McFadden continued. “Any time we can create a greater awareness of our services (is good). The proceeds from it (event) will create more programs and better opportunities for our kids.”

Ellen said the event will also raise money for the Southern Foodways Alliance, a group that studies and documents diverse food cultures of the changing American South, according to its website.

The chef hopes to raise $4,000 from the event, which he will divide in half with a portion going to each organization.

The Krawfish for Kids is set for 5–9 p.m. June 27 at Nutwood Plantation, 1339 Upper Big Springs Road. Tickets are $15, or $10 for children. The cost includes food, entertainment and children’s activities. There will be an additional cost to enter raffle contests.

Ellen said the cornhole tournament will begin around 6:30 p.m. and is open to people of all ages. The winner will win a customized cornhole board.

Anyone wanting tickets and more information can visit Folks can also call the Boys and Girls Club of West Georgia at 706-812-9698. The information is also on their Facebook page.