Thursday September 02, 2010 | 09:48 PM

Even though Hurricane Earl is racing up the East Coast toward New England, the skies were powder blue and the view was gorgeous tonight at Spring Point Light on Southern Maine Community College's incredible oceanfront campus in South Portland.

"We made arrangements for the storm to be delayed one day," SMCC President James Ortiz joked during the Light on the Point party held to thank all the college's business partners who depend on and support the college's wide range of technical and professional programs.

Mark Duval of the Breakwater Daybreak Rotary Club and Sybil Riemensnider of the South Portland-Cape Elizabeth Rotary show off the photographs Dr. Ortiz presented them with. Both accepted the honors on behalf of their clubs, which organize the yearly International Food Festival and donate all the proceeds to scholarships for international and multicultural students.

Also honored at the party were Chris Emmons, the president of Gorham Savings Bank, for the bank's support of the college's business department, and State Senator Stan Gerzofsky, who played a crucial role in SMCC's expansion to the former Brunswick Naval Air Station. The Midcoast Campus is expected to open next year.

After the awards presentation, Dr. Ortiz invited student Ater Ater to the stage to offer a few remarks. You may recall Ater from the story in the Press Herald about Portland's summer police cadets. He is a second year student at SMCC studying criminal justice. Early in his life he fled civil war in Sudan with his family, and now he's a well-spoken college student attending SMCC on the James Angelo Memorial Scholarship.

Since SMCC is the local go-to spot for culinary education, the students treated us to quite the spread. This lobster roll station was one of many buffet tables at the party. Other students passed hors d'oeuvres, and they all helped craft the menu, source the ingredients and prepare the meal. The college is a popular and affordable location for weddings, and the students handle all the catering.

Floydz Boyz, a jazz trio made up of faculty and staff members Rob Schreiber, Floydzell Johnson and Peter Donnelly, served up a lively soundtrack to the steamy evening.

I'll have more details about the party and lots more snapshots in the Sept. 5 edition of the Maine Sunday Telegram. Don't forget to check it out.

And until then, I hope to see you out and about.

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Avery Yale Kamila dishes about southern Maine's hottest parties.

Avery can be contacted at 791-6297 or
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