Monday, February 1, 2016

Red & White on Thursday Night 2016

The Arthritis Foundation's annual fundraiser, Red & White on Thursday Night, is one of my favorite events. It's the perfect excuse to head to Akron and I love getting a sample of their tasty food scene.

I started feeling sick earlier in the day, but figured it wasn't a big deal and my excitement about the event buoyed me. My friend EKC and I arrived early, and from what I heard, it was a good thing. People arriving later had a long line to greet them. I snapped a quick pic of the main event space before it got crowded and we made our way to the VIP area. 
There was a wine table, gift bags, a relaxing 10 minute chair massage and assorted pastries and coffee from Panera set up. After grabbing a glass of wine, we headed straight to the the best part about VIP - Dante serving up sushi. 

After we stuffed ourselves with tuna belly and salmon belly rolls and tuna on a Pringle, we made our way back to the main room.

By this time I knew that I wasn't going to be able to hang out all night because I was feeling worse by the minute, so we munched our way around the room to taste as much as possible. Yes, I'm that girl who can eat when sick. I was really bad about getting photos (sorry!) but these should make you hungry:
Mahi mahi taco from Nuevo - these guys will be opening a new restaurant on the
Lake Erie waterfront at E.9th - head to Akron for a sneak peak and be sure to check them out!
Dante Part 2 - this cavatelli was one of my favorites. I really loved
the freshness the pomegranate added
Candies were from Chocolates by Erin - these were so good
I may have stuffed a couple in my purse...
Melt managed to give us a sandwich...cookie! Two flavors,
this one and a chocolate with vanilla cream filling
I was super excited and beyond amazed to see these girls...
It's a Hero's Rachel and brand new Remy
...because the tiny little bundle you see here was only FIVE DAYS OLD and already at her first foodie event. 

There were a ton of great raffle items but I needed to head home. Some others included a blimp ride, wine and bourbon baskets, golf and spa packages and more.

It was another great event and I'm so glad I was able to attend, even for only a couple of hours. 

If you haven't explored our neighbor to the south, you really should! Akron has a lot of great eats. Make 2016 your year to explore the 330 - you won't be disappointed!

If you would like to donate to the Arthritis Foundation, click here. You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

*Disclosure: I was provided VIP tickets for myself and a guest and 2 tickets to giveaway in exchange for 
helping to promote this event. As always, opinions are my own.*

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Cookies for Orphans at Chick-fil-A

Chick-fil-A’s “Cookies for Orphans” Benefit Takes Bite Out of Hunger
Do Something Sweet for Children in Need on Jan. 27
photo credit
WHEN: Wednesday Jan. 27 from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
WHERE: Participating Chick-fil-A locations 

More than 30 Chick-fil-A restaurants in Ohio and Northern Kentucky are inviting area residents to join in the fight against hunger – with cookies – today. 

All proceeds from the sale of chocolate chunk cookies from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. will be donated to A Child’s Hope International, a Cincinnati-based charity supporting orphans and vulnerable children locally and worldwide.

“The purchase of a single cookie can provide four high-protein meals, 25 gallons of clean water or a Challenge Pack with medical and food supplies,” says Larry Bergeron, founder and executive director of A Child’s Hope International. “There are 143 million orphans in the world. They all need hope and a home. Through this special one-day campaign, we hope to raise the level of awareness about orphans and raise funds to help them.” 

Last year’s efforts resulted in funding of 9,269 gallons of purified water and 20,000 protein meals to orphans and other at-risk children. The goal this year, with the help of the greater-Cleveland community, is to provide 12,000 gallons of clean water, nourish 100 children for a year and help fund needed medical and food supplies.

Head on over to your local restaurant for a sweet treat that will help a child in need. Beachwood, Harvard Park, Cuyahoga Falls, Macedonia, Rocky River, Strongsville and Willoughby are just some of the locations in our area participating.

Cookies are available individually or in trays which may be ordered in advance by calling participating Chick-fil-A restaurants. You can also donate directly here.

Displaying Chick-fil-A-Cookie.jpg
Displaying Chick-fil-A-Cookie.jpg

Monday, January 25, 2016

The Great Big Home + Garden Show 2016 Giveaway

I am one of those people who hate winter in CLE. I try to remind myself that it's only a few (ha!) months and after it's over, I can go back to loving our weather.

But about now, I start getting the itch to see grass and smell flowers. Spring cleaning actually starts to sound good. Thankfully, the Great Big Home + Garden Show comes at the perfect time to get me out of my winter funk.

This year the gardens have a celebration theme and I can't wait! From Mardi Gras and Labor Day to welcoming home our military members or enjoying a wedding, each garden will leave visitors feeling festive and ready to plan their own backyard party. I know I'm ready to bust out the grill just thinking about it.

And you know you can't have a party without some great food. There will be lots of tasty inspiration at the Loretta Paganini Cooking Stage for spring, summer or anytime you are hosting friends and family.

Italian Appetizers, Easy Thai Food, Hearty Winter Soups and Valentine's Cupcakes are some of the delicious demonstrations this year. One of the shows I'm most looking forward is on Saturday 2/6 "Cooking with your Garden" with AJ Petitti and Stefanie Paganini because it combines my love of cooking and gardening.

Winter is also a great time to plan those spring and summer projects around your home. They will be showing you How to Build a Firepit along with kitchen design tips, best organic solutions for the yard, LEAP Into the Garden with Native Plants, top gardening trends, Trendy Terrariums and weekend project ideas. 

And what is the Great Big Home + Garden Show without celebrities? This year you'll get a chance to see:

Hosts of Two Chicks and a Hammer
Two Chicks and a Hammer

The Beekman Boys
The Cooking Channel's Beekman Boys
Toledo native Jason Cameron from DIY Network

Matt Fox of Room by Room
And local favorites Stefanie Paganini, Ursula Carmona and Angelo and AJ Petitti will be there too!

Some of this year’s show features include:

  • Wolf Timbers Rustic Manor, a 2,500-square-foot, ranch rustic-style Idea Home, is an open and airy three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom energy efficient home with a layout designed to wow! Built by Blossom Homes and sponsored by Sherwin-Williams, Cleveland Magazine and Ohio Magazine the home features an aging-in-place design that will inspire visitors thinking of building or renovating their homes.
  • The 1,500-square-foot Xtend Technologies Hi-Tech Entertainment Home, built by Pepperwood Homes, is designed with entertaining in mind and will inspire visitors with ideas for their own entertainment spaces. The home features the latest in indoor and outdoor technology from Xtend Technologies. Landscaping surrounding the Hi-Tech Home will also be provided by Morton’s Landscaping.
  • Everyone deserves their own personal getaway space and this year’s She Sheds will have visitors thinking about how to create their own backyard retreat. Whether it’s a nature nest, writer’s retreat or wine tasting room, these She Sheds will spark ideas for creating any type of retreat space with a feminine touch.
You can purchase tickets online. Adults are $12 and Children 6-12 are only $5. If you use promo code EATCLE16 when you purchase, you'll receive $1.00 off each ticket.

Or you can enter for a chance to win two tickets right here! Use the Rafflecopter below to enter. 

Contest ends Saturday January 30th at midnight. Good luck!
** Disclosure: I was provided two tickets to giveaway as well as two for my own use 
in exchange for helping promote this event. As always, opinions expressed are my own. **