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Pioneering Sequim family opens café, custom catering business

The transition has been so smooth that most people in the community probably haven’t even realized a change has occurred.

Jeff and Rhonda Cameron took over the restaurant located in the Sequim Senior Activity Center last June, replacing Elements Café with Cameron’s Café and Custom Catering. A one-year anniversary and grand opening celebration is scheduled June 9-13.

The restaurant serves lunch from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday. Minimal changes have occurred to the menu, mostly just additions, said Rhonda Cameron, such as hot sandwiches and her husband’s “famous” cheesecake. Even “much-loved” day cook Sherold Reed is the same.

Every dish is homemade and fresh.

“It’s real cooking,” Jeff Cameron said. “We aren’t opening a box and putting it in a warmer.”

In addition to serving lunch at the café, Jeff and Rhonda Cameron prepare and sell ready to go from the freezer or refrigerator to the oven “meals for home.” Prices range depending on the menu and number of items selected. Eight choices are available each month. Orders are due by Friday and available for pick up the

following Monday. “Meals for home” menus are available at the café and online at www.cameronscafe.com.

“’Meals for home’ are different from what we serve in the café,” Rhonda Cameron said. “They are good for new moms, working moms, single parents, seniors and busy families.”

The Camerons are a pioneering family in Sequim. Jeff Cameron’s great-grandparents came to the peninsula and built a homestead on Blue Mountain Road in the late 1890s. The couple had 13 children, many of whom attended the old Dungeness Schoolhouse.

The café is decorated with historical photos of the Camerons and other pioneer families, old farm equipment, rustic barn boards, work boots and more.

“Sequim is all about its pioneers,” Rhonda Cameron said. “To bring these photos and memories into a public space is a gift.”

“The more Sequim grows, the more people lose track of its history,” she continued. “This café captures the town’s history and has a warm family feel.”

The café is independent from the senior center and open to the public. The environment, according to its owners, is friendly and casual. And don’t be fooled by a full parking lot, Rhonda Cameron said, the senior center is usually bustling with activity but that doesn’t mean the restaurant is busy.

“You can come as you are,” Rhonda Cameron encouraged. “If you have muddy boots, don’t worry about it. A man’s got to eat.”

Cameron’s offers custom catering for up to 250 guests. Jeff Cameron used to work as a personal chef and the couple has been catering weddings and other special events together since 2003.

“We catered a wedding as a favor to some friends and I was hooked,” Rhonda Cameron said. “We sit down with people to figure out what they want. If you absolutely have to have stuffed mushrooms or can’t eat wheat, let us know. You don’t have to pick menu A or menu

B, you can mix-match. It’s

custom catering.”

Free consultations are available via e-mail and telephone. Once a menu is decided upon, a deposit is required to hold the date. Half of the catering fee is due two weeks prior to the event; the rest is due the day of.

“Jeff is hugely passionate about food. He won’t admit it, but he’s just got it,” Rhonda Cameron bragged about her husband. “We love serving people, whether it’s a bride and groom or a customer in the café. We love giving them what they want without them having to do anything. We put love in our food because we love what we do,” she said with a smile.



Family dining and custom catering



Cameron’s Café and Custom Catering, 921 E. Hammond St., serves lunch from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday, offers ready to warm and serve “meals for home,” custom catering for up to 250 guests and special order desserts with 72 hours notice. For more information, call 681-5060 or go online to www.cameronscafe.com.

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