Main Street Kansas: Students serve up home-cooked meals at Old Oxford Mill

Old Oxford Mill (Photo courtesy KSN News)

OXFORD, Kan. (KSNW) – Residents of Oxford, Kansas got their flour and cereal from their local mill for generations. Those days are long gone, but now visitors are getting home-cooked meals at the Old Oxford Mill.

And for some Oxford High School students, the mill is serving up life experiences.

The original mill was built in 1874 and was used as a flour mill, powered by the creek nearby. Years later, in 2007, the high school took it over.

“USD 358 Oxford. They re-cleaned the kitchen, re-did everything, came up with the whole idea,” explained Catherine Zimmerman, Head Cook Supervisor at Old Oxford Mill.

Now, students from Oxford High run everything. From washing the dishes, to cooking the food, to managing the books, these kids are rolling up their sleeves and serving others home-cooked, quality meals.

“It’s kind of crazy sometimes. We have to take care of all the financials and make the monthly menus with the help of our cook and we basically do everything being overseen with supervisors,” said Henry Carter, manager of Old Oxford Mill. “It helps us see how to manage a business if that’s something we’re interested in.”

“It has just been a really good, rounded experience for them to put down on a resume honestly, ” added Zimmerman.

On average, Carter said the staff serves anywhere from 40 to 50 people a day. And on Sundays, a set number of meals are available for customers, so they do recommend making a reservation.

“It’s not so much that people come for the food. It’s that they come for the experience to come down here to the historic site and to see kids run a restaurant. It’s a really great experience.”

If you would like to learn more about the Old Oxford Mill, and what they might be serving up this Sunday, check out their Facebook page.

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