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Wauka chicken pie: Volunteers are working to the bone
Oma Holland picks chicken Saturday with her grandson Chris Riley at Wauka Mountain Elementary School. Oma has attended all but three of the 83 chicken pie suppers at Wauka Mountain. - photo by Tom Reed

Chicken pie supper

When: 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday

Where: Wauka Mountain Elementary School, 5850 Brookton-Lula Road

Cost: $6 per ticket for eat-in or take-out; pies also available

It’s almost time for chicken pie.

Volunteers are gearing up for the 84th annual Wauka Mountain Elementary School Chicken Pie Supper, scheduled for 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday.

On the Saturday before, volunteers spent all day chicken pickin’ — cooking and chopping around 3,000 pounds of chicken to make the pies.

Parent volunteers Ken and Laquita Stanley said the annual event is a special one for their family and the community.

"It’s such a tradition for this part of North Hall, something that is endearing to all of us," Laquita Stanley said.

The chicken pie supper is the school’s biggest fundraiser of the year. The event originated at Brookton Elementary, Wauka Mountain’s predecessor.

"The way it was held at the time was parents cooked the chicken pies at home and they brought them to the school and served plates out of the truly then-homemade pies," Ken Stanley said. "The recipe remains the same from that time."

Over the years, the supper has grown into a countywide affair that has even been used by politicians as a campaign event in election years.

Plates will be $6 and whole pies and take-out plates will also be on sale.

But don’t confuse Wauka Mountain’s entree with a chicken pot pie, the kind you can buy frozen in the grocery store.

"Chicken pie is different from chicken pot pie. No vegetables. It’s dough dumplings cooked along with chicken in a heavy broth ... in a crust, " Ken Stanley said.

Laquita Stanley said preparing for the supper involves many volunteers from the community, some of whom no longer have children at Wauka Mountain.

"We’ve had some of the volunteers who may have started there when there children went to school there 20 years ago who are still coming back volunteering. So our volunteers are what really makes the chicken pie event," Laquita Stanley said. "Once your kids are out school doesn’t mean you’re off the hook for chicken pie. You’ll be involved in it for a while."

This year, there will be a few new additions to the traditional chicken pie supper.

For picky little eaters, there will be macaroni and cheese and chicken fingers.

Ken Stanley said there are many chicken pie supper regulars, but this year, Wauka Mountain is hoping to get more young families in on the tradition.

The proceeds of the event will go toward new playground equipment and beautifying the school.