Blog: Wise NY's Wise Chef's Night
In light of the economic uncertainty which surrounds us in 2012, the importance of financial literacy cannot be overstated. Targeting disadvantaged youths, Working in Support of Education or W!se, is striving to educate those who perhaps need it most, to better prepare them for their working futures. Through efforts and programs aimed at increasing their established financial literacy initiatives to help students reach a comfort level with their financial independence, W!se will assist approximately 15,000 youths in New York City alone.
Tuesday night, W!se hosted their second annual “W!se Chef’s Night” event to help raise awareness of and to help fund their different initiatives from teacher certifications in personal finance to building community awareness to educating educators of domestic violence. Surrounded by friends and supporters, the plush Prince George Ballroom in the Flatiron District was overwhelmed with philanthropy as guests were treated to an evening of food and drink tastes from some of the finest restaurants in Manhattan as well as a live auction, fantastic silent auction items, and a full-fledged casino (with faux money, of course) to boot.
Upon entering the massive space, guests were handed a $1,000 chip for table games- with craps, blackjack, and poker being the options. Of course, once the evening got underway, finding a spot proved to be a challenge, but in the charitable spirit of the event, there was plenty to do aside from throwing down at a green felt table. With a DJ working up the background soundtrack for the three hour event, we began by pacing the silent auction stations. Autographed framed pictures and memorabilia donated by the local sports teams- from a Henrik Lundqvist jersey to a Mark Sanchez football- framed pictures of Jay-Z, the Rolling Stones, and Eddie Vedder, and trips to Las Vegas, Napa, and even to the Playboy Mansion for Halloween ($6,000!).
Washing down each bite, we paced the ballroom gulping down flavorful sips of suds provided by Brooklyn Brewery, picking here and there at desserts from Cupcake a la Crème and Stuffed Artisan Cannolis, before chatting with some of the festival organizers and heading off into the night. While it’s a shame that W!se’s Chef’s Night only happens once a year, you can do your part by making a donation on their website. And if you or anyone else you know is interested in either getting involved or learning more about one of W!se’s interactive programs, you owe it to yourself to be proactive and reach out to them. Although the many participating restaurants may have brought us to the dance, the need for outreach into our communities and the important message being delivered by W!se was the overarching theme that we’d leave with.
- Jane Van Arsdale