Discover upcoming events in Northwest Arkansas
For our first Wednesdays Over Water (WOW) event of 2023, join us for a unique culinary experience as we explore our local and regional expression of African American food and drink culture. Sharon Killian of NWA Black Heritage Association, Thomas Williams of Delta Dirt Farm and Distillery of West Helena, local Chef Steven Brooks of Chef Brooks Catering and Cook with Brooks, and Northwest Arkansas’s favorite host Jaclyn House of KNWA discuss the many influences in our practices of distillation, foodways, and agriculture.
Featuring hand-crafted dishes, inspired drinks, and expert insights from your hosts, this special culinary event is the perfect way to kick off Black History Month and 2023. We hope to see you there.
Tickets include welcome cocktail, all food courses, and all beverages.
A casual evening of food, drinks, and conversation, Wednesdays Over Water offers a chance to enjoy a four-course selection of small-bite plates paired with expert insights and libations. Each menu is inspired by a chosen theme, whether it be works in the museum’s galleries and exhibitions or a particular culinary art and tradition, and features commentary by our Culinary team, guest speakers, and museum curators.
Jaclyn House is a Chicago native but has called NWA home for many years. Before pursuing a career in media, she spent over 10 years in the corporate sector in merchandise support.
In 2016 she joined the KNWA/FOX24 family as a Digital Producer and created local stories for web and social media. She then transitioned to appearing on-air Monday-Friday with a “trending” segment.
Jaclyn currently produces and co-hosts Good Day NWA, the area’s only daily lifestyle show that highlights the amazing people and places that make Northwest Arkansas a great place to live.
Jaclyn is a mom of three and married to her college sweetheart Raymond House.
She enjoys speaking at various events in NWA, meeting and connecting with new people and has a passion for community service. Jaclyn currently serves as a board member for the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra, NWA Food Bank and Community Ambassador for Single Parent Scholarship Fund of NWA.
Sharon Killian is an award-winning artist, community advocate, and educator. Sharon is passionate about filling in and correcting the historical record of Black history and heritage in Northwest Arkansas, where she visited for 14 years before relocating in 2005 as an “empty nester”. She understands that Black history and heritage in the region has suffered the system of erasure immediately set into place in 1865, that it is challenging work to undo or mitigate, and that it must be done by everyone with diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in mind. Her work as president of both NWA African American Heritage Association (NWA Black Heritage) and Art Ventures NWA melds culture with art and promotes culturally and historically informed conversation and creative engagement locally, regionally and nationally.
Chef Steven Brooks
Chef Steven Brooks started his career in the culinary field in 1991 at Bruno’s Inc. and Vincent‘s Market as a sous chef, where he honed his culinary, kitchen management, and catering event planning skills, including catering the Bruno’s Memorial Classic Senior PGA tournament, 1991-1996, and the 1996 Olympics soccer matches in Birmingham, Alabama.
He was an integral part of the opening team that grew the company to 19 new locations throughout the southeast. In 2000, he was recruited by Market Foods LLC to help the already established, new-concept gourmet grocery store in Rogers, Arkansas: The Market at Pinnacle Point. Since his move to Arkansas, Chef Brooks has become a well-known member of the culinary community. He was an Arkansas Business Journal “40 under 40” in 2009.
His culinary experience includes being the Owner/Chef at Chef Brooks Catering LLC, and his TV experience includes Cooking with the Market and Bring the Cuisine on Jones network television; Cooking Today and Just Desserts on Fox and KNWA; 282 episodes of Cooking Today: Arkansas in 2014 and 2015, including a Broadcaster’s Award win in 2014; Cook with Brooks on Arkansas PBS in 2017; Soul Men of the High South, with co-host Case Dighero; and the Beat Bobby Flay episode “WHO’s Wayne is it Anyway” in 2022.
Delta Dirt Distillery
Delta Dirt Distillery is a family run, farm-to-bottle distillery located in the Mississippi River Delta—meaning the grains used for production of spirits are grown by the family. The team consists of parents, Harvey and Donna Williams, and children TaHara, Donavan, and Thomas Williams. The uniqueness of being able to grow our own grain makes us the only Black-owned spirits brand to do so in America. We are deeply rooted into the richest soil in the country and want to not only take from this land but give back to it by supporting the bright young minds of tomorrow’s future. We support our community by reinvesting one percent of our annual sales back into local community initiatives with a heavy focus on youth education programs.
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