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Celebrity Chef Night benefits Barbara’s Friends cancer fund

By Staff | Aug 4, 2009

Cape Harbour’s Rumrunners restaurant is hosting the annual Lee Memorial Health System Foundation Celebrity Chef Night later this month.
In its fifth year, the Aug. 19 event will raise money for Barbara’s Friends, the cancer fund for The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida.
According to Suzanne Bartels, director of development for the foundation, Celebrity Chef Night is a kickoff event to the Helping Kids with Cancer Radiothon scheduled for Oct. 16.
“We do a bunch of events leading up to the event in October,” she said.
Top chefs from local restaurants — Rumrunners, The Joint, H2, Mad Takeout and Cin Cin — will offer samples of their finest gourmet dishes followed by a dessert showcase created by Norman Love Confections.
The proceeds given to Barbara’s Friends, named after Barbara Haskell who died from breast cancer at the age of 32, benefit the pediatric oncology and hematology programs that provide medical care for children with certain types of cancers and blood disorders.
More than 3,000 sick children have been treated at the Barbara’s Friends Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Outpatient Center since its opening.
Each year the Celebrity Chef Night raises approximately $30,000 to directly impact medical care for these children.
Besides enjoying samples of gourmet food and cocktails, guests can enjoy live performances from local groups J.P.H. and The Reggae Jam.
Bidding will also open on a silent auction with a chance to win batting practice with the Tampa Bay Rays, a Hawaiian cooking class at Roy’s, baseball memorabilia signed by Derek Jeter of the New York Yankees or a guitar autographed by Dave Matthews of the Dave Matthews Band.
Perhaps one of the most exciting giveaways includes a $2,000 diamond in one of the $50 champagne flutes given out during the evening.
Bartels said former patients from The Children’s Hospital are expected to attend.
“Some of the kids who have been treated in the cancer center will be coming with their parents,” she said.
Tickets for Celebrity Chef Night are $125 per person and include food tasting and refreshments.
For more information about the event or to purchase tickets, call the Lee Memorial Health System Foundation at 985-3550.