My service site is a school district, and in the first week of October they held their High School Homecoming. On the Friday of the homecoming game and the school spirit day, I hosted a mystery taste test featuring an orange vegetable to compliment the school’s colors: sweet potatoes.
I grew up eating raw sweet potatoes cut into chips or sticks as a snack, which I have some to realize is not a mainstream way of enjoying the root vegetable. That Friday I processed approximately 18 pounds of sweet potatoes into sticks and waited at the end of the high school lunch line to serve them to students.
In keeping with the spirit of fun around homecoming, I tempted students to try the vegetable, saying that it “looks, feels, smells, and tastes like a carrot, but it is NOT a carrot!” To reward their bravery, I offered any student who tried the veggie the opportunity to enter their name into a drawing for me to bring them and a friend a homemade meal at my expense. To my surprise, over 80 students tried the vegetable, nearly all of the students liked the sweet potatoes, and many staff members helped and joined in on the fun!