New home for Ithaca's annual Election Day pancake breakfast, a winner no matter your politics!

November 2, 2015 by Mark H. Anbinder

Tomorrow is Election Day, and for the 42nd straight year, Ithaca's Rotary Clubs team up to host the annual Election Day pancake breakfast. For the first time, the pancake breakfast moves to Coltivare, on South Cayuga Street.

Former county legislator Frank Proto resets a table at the Rotary Club pancake breakfast. 14850 file photo.Former county legislator Frank Proto resets a table at the Rotary Club pancake breakfast. 14850 file photo.The gathering is a chance not only to get a good breakfast, but an opportunity to hobnob with a veritable who's-who of Ithaca and Tompkins County, including lots of political and business folks. Plain and blueberry pancakes, eggs, hash browns, sausage, applesauce, juice, and coffee will be available from 7am until 7pm, cooked and served up by Rotarians and local politicians, as well as Tompkins Cortland Community College (TC3) students this year. 

You might find the mayor or a county representative pouring your coffee or clearing your plate, and don't be surprised if a police officer, business owner, or assemblyman is serving the eggs.

The Rotary Clubs use the event to raise funds for their student exchange program, bringing international students to our local high schools, and sending some of our own students to other countries. Lots of these students help throughout the day, so you may also have a chance to practice your high school Spanish, or even your Swedish. This year's breakfast is also in honor of longtime Rotarian Noel Desch. The onetime Town of Ithaca town supervisor has been recognized repeatedly for his tremendous service to Ithaca Rotary and the Ithaca community.

Rotarians preparing breakfast. Photo provided.Rotarians preparing breakfast. Photo provided.For many years, the Election Day pancake breakfast was held at the Women's Community Building in Downtown Ithaca. The event moved a few blocks west to the VFW in 2012 when the Women's Community Building was demolished to make way for a residential development.

The new venue, Coltivare, is a "farm to bistro" collaboration of TC3's culinary arts, beverage marketing, and farm education programs. It's a professionally operated restaurant and events center focusing on locally grown food and locally produced beverages, as well as a teaching facility. Coltivare also hosts the Rotary Club of Ithaca's weekly Wednesday noon luncheon meetings. Everyone is welcome to attend to learn more about Rotary; the luncheon cost is $15 at the door.

The pancake breakfast costs $9 this year, payable at the door, or tickets are available from Rotary members. Children under 12 eat for free. Coltivare is at 235 South Cayuga Street, and organizers say discounted parking is available in the Cayuga Street parking garage. Get your parking ticket validated at the breakfast.

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