Category Archives: Fundraisers

Fill Your Mug with KMUW

KMUW is turning 65 and is celebrating with cake and gelato.

The public radio station will celebrate its birthday with the seventh annual Fill Your Mug event, which will be put on from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday at The Eaton Venue, 517 E. Douglas.

Attendees should bring their KMUW mugs for a free gelato from Caffe Moderne and birthday cake made by Wichita Cake Creations. Those who don’t have mugs can make a pledge to KMUW at the event and get one.

The event also will include live music from folk group Elliot Road.


I’ll be dipping Italian ice for a cause on Thursday

10421528_10203370271110179_2567136248115303802_nI’ve been needing an arm workout, and thanks to Heidi Howard, the executive director of Deaf Kids’ Art Workout, I’m going to get one.

On Thursday night, Shocker women’s coach Jody Adams and I will be “Celebrity Dippers” and a fundraiser from 6 to 8 p.m. at Rita’s Italian Ice at 2929 N. Rock Road that will benefit DeafKAN.

Jody and I will make frozen treats for the people, and Rita’s will donate 20 percent of their sales from the evening to to DeafKAN, a group that helps deaf children open up through arts and performance.

This place offers all kinds of delicious frozen treats, from custard to the sorbet-like Italian ice to mix-ins. I suggest getting one of each.

Hope to see you there.

Celebrity & Chef Cookoff now at Intrust Bank Arena

Last year's panel of judges getting a sample of the creation of the event's eventual winner, Chef Marshall Roth

Last year’s panel of judges getting a sample of the creation of the event’s eventual winner, Chef Marshall Roth

I love love love the Orpheum’s annual Celebrity & Chef Cookoff, a fundraising event that brings in money for the historic theater and its restoration.

This year’s 13th annual event is coming up on Tuesday, June 10 and it has a new venue… a BIG new venue. The event will take place at Intrust Bank Arena, both on the main floor and in the concourses. For the past several years, it’s happened in much closer quarters at the Wichita Marriott.

I will join Chester’s Chophouse chef Bobby Lane and Tanya’s Soup Kitchen owner Tanya Tandoc on the judges’ panel for the event, which pairs local chefs with Wichita celebrities for an “Iron Chef”-style on-the-spot cooking challenge. The chefs take it very seriously. The competing chefs this year are John Fitzthum of the Candle Club, Paul Freimuth of the Hyatt’s Harvest Kitchen/Bar, Ben George of Siena Tuscan Steakhouse, Jim McNulty from Kansas Star Casino, Adrian Prud Homme De Lodder from Bella Vita Bistro, Patrick Shibley from Doo Dah Diner and Kasey Thexton, the food and beverage manager at Intrust Bank Arena. Chef Jason Febres of Taste & See, who last year was moved to the judges’ panel after winning two cookoffs in a row, will also be back on contestants’ row.

The chefs will randomly be assigned celebrity helpers. On that list: Newman University president Noreen Carrocci, Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter, KWCH anchor Cindy Klose, Go Wichita president Susie Santo, House of Schwan owner Barry Schwan, Freddy’s Frozen Custard co-owner Bill Simon, Davis-Moore’s Sean Tarbell and J.P. Weigand president Dawn Truman.

Those who buy an $85 ticket get to watch the competition go down and sample food from many local restaurants, including Bella Vita Bistro, Douglas Avenue Chop Shop, Kanai, Molino’s Mexican Cuisine, and Twizted Confections. They also get cocktails and can participate in live and silent auctions.

Tickets are available now at or by calling 316-263-0884.

Mediterranean Festival will feature baklawa sundaes

The baklawa sundae

The baklawa sundae

Give the people what they want.

That’s what the organizers of the annual Mediterranean Festival at St. Mary Orthodox Christian Church have learned.

When they put on the event on Saturday, they’ll be bringing back two favorites by popular demand.

One is an invention called a baklawa sundae. These decadent desserts, made with ice cream covered with the layered Mediterranean dessert baklawa and chocolate sauce, used to be a popular River Festival Block Party treat back when the party happened on East Douglas.

They’re also bringing back stuffed grape leaves, which they decided not to make last year. But attendees helped them undecide that decision.

Dinner organizers are introducing a sampler plate, which will include a grilled chicken kebab, green beans and rice, hummus and pita, a stuffed grape leaf, a stuffed cabbage roll and a Greek cookie for dessert. Attendees also can order a la carte, get items to go in the bake shop and dine outdoors while listening to traditional music and buy kafta and chicken kabobs right off the grill.

The festival is 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on May 10 at the church. For more information, call 316-264-1576 or visit

Annual Lions Club pancake day is Thursday

FOODThe 56th annual Downtown Lions Club pancake day, an event that attracts about 2,000 people to Century II’s Exhibition Hall for all-you-can-eat pancakes plus sausage and coffee, is schedule for 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday.

Tickets are $6 in advance by calling 316-264-1610 and are available at the door. Money raised goes toward supporting free and assisted child care programs at the YMCA.

I went a few years ago, and it was delicious, though I’m still trying to wash the aroma of freshly flipped pancakes out of my clothes.

Amber Waves a new beer fundraiser by Starkey

I count any day I find out about a new beer/wine fundraiser as a good day. Today was one of those days.

Amber Waves Logo Large

Jamie Opat from Starkey, Inc., stopped by to tell me about Amber Waves, a new beer stroll planned for May 16 in Delano. It sounds sort of like the popular Winefest Walkabout only with beer in Delano instead of wine in Old Town.

The event includes 13 participating Delano businesses who will offer 2 oz. pours of craft beers made by brewers such as Breckenridge, Sam Adams and Schlafly. Those who attend buy a $50 ticket and stroll from store-to-store sampling the beer. Several of those stores also will offer hors’ d’oeuvres prepared by local restaurants and prize drawings, too. Already signed up are stores such as All Things BBQ, Bluebird Arthouse and Twist Yarn Shop.

The event is from 6 to 9 p.m., when most of those businesses would normally be closed. Money raised goes to Starkey, Inc.  More information and tickets are available at 

Beer has the starring role in Tallgrass fundraiser

hops and barleyThe Hops, The Malts and The Barley is a fundraiser for the Tallgrass Film Association scheduled for Friday that will feature local bars restaurants competing to make the best “beer cocktail.”

The event will be from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Abode Venue, 1330 E. Douglas, and among the bars and restaurants competing to make the best mixed drink using craft beers are The AnchorHeroesLarkspurThe MonarchMort’sPublic at the Brickyarand Taste & See. The winning cocktail will be featured at a VIP party during October’s Tallgrass Film Festival.

Tickets are $80 in advance at or $90 at the door and include complimentary wine, 12 craft beers on tap and martinis for sale. It’ll also have food by Olive Tree Catering and music by DJ Carbon.

Mark your calendars and loosen your belts: It’s food fundraiser season

maxresdefaultEarly spring is typically the time local churches and organizations start feeding people for a cause. That season unofficially launches Monday in Wichita.

A whole lot of food-based fundraisers will happen over the next couple of weeks. Some are simple chili feeds. Other are elaborate galas with huge spreads and fancy attire.

Following are a few to put on your calendar:

Dining with Friends, Monday, Feb.24: This event is a benefit for Positive Directions and includes a special dinner at Taste & See, 255 N. Washington. It’s a five-course dinner with two wine pairings per course. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the dinner is $65 a person. Reservations are required by calling James Woods at 263-2214 extension 109.

Palette to Palate, Friday, Feb. 28: This annual fundraiser for KETCH mixes art, food and drink. It includes food from local restaurants, wine tasting and silent and live wine auctions. The event starts at 7 p.m. Friday at Beech Activity Center, 9710 E. Central. Tickets are $75 a person. Tickets are available at or by calling 316-383-8889.

Prairie Fire Chuckwagon, March 1: This all-you-can-eat chili and stew feed is put on by Grace United Methodist Church, 944 S. Topeka, and happens from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 1. Tickets are $6 for adults and $3 for children 12 and under and include dessert and a drink. Additional desserts can be purchased for 50 cents. For more information, call 316-262-6195.

Throw Down in Old Town, March 6: Women in Aviation Air Capital City Chapter are putting on a cookie competition from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, March 6 at Social Manor, 920 E. Douglas. The event will put local cookie chefs against each other, including Bruce Reesman from Twizted Confections and Nancy Bell Ringer, the Dish Diva. Tickets are $15, and chances to vote for a favorite cookie are $1 each. Tickets are available at

Wichita Airport Lions Club Chili Feed, March 8: This is the 22nd annual chili feed for this club, and it lasts from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 8. It happens at the Sedgwick County Extension Office, 7001 W. 21st St. N. Tickets are $7, and the event  offers all-you-can-eat chili and crackers and unlimited coffee and tea. Soft drinks and desserts are available for purchase. The proceeds will go toward community service activities and projects for the club.

Death by Chocolate, March 8: This eighth annual fundraiser for Exploration Place fills the children’s museums with chocolate creations prepared by local bakers, chocolate makers and restaurants. Visitors also can enjoy wine and chocolate parings, liv emusic. an open bar, and a silent auction. The event is from 7 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, March 8. Tickets are $80 a person and are available at

St. Paul’s annual chicken noodle dinner is on Saturday

A man and his Miracle Whip. Cliff Simmons is the man who does almost all the shopping, organizing and marketing for the annual chicken noodle dinner. I thought he was pretty great.

A man and his Miracle Whip. Cliff Simmons is the man who does almost all the shopping, organizing and marketing for the annual chicken noodle dinner. I thought he was pretty great.

Doesn’t a bowl of hot chicken and noodles sound good right now? Brrrrrrrrr.

Saturday is the day for is the 68th annual St. Paul’s United Methodist Church chicken and noodles dinner, which usually gets about 2,000 attendees. They sit down at tables and feast on family-style servings of  homemade chicken and noodles, mashed potatoes and coleslaw. It’s an all-you-can-eat kind of thing.

I sat down with the organizers earlier this week, who are getting sort of worn out. I wouldn’t have the energy to do all they do, and I’m 40 years younger.

They hinted this could be the last year for the dinner, but apparently, they feel that way every year.

Either way, it might be a good idea to go on Saturday. Admission is $1o. Get all the details in my story.

Two approaching wine events

1554581_10151958331917675_1336795804_nLike wine? Of course you do. Here are two opportunities coming up to drink it:

1. Capricorn tasting at Oeno, 3oo N. Mead: Oeno’s monthly wine tasting, which costs $35 a person, is at 7 p.m. on Saturday. It’ll feature three courses and three wine pairings plus a dessert. Among the items on the menu — sesame crusted ahi tuna paired with Chime Pinot Noir from California. For reservations, call 316-440-5000.

2. Dining for Friends, 6 p.m. Jan. 27, Taste & See, 255 N. Washington: Positive Directions is putting on a fundraising event that will feature five courses with two wine pairings per course. The doors open at 6 p.m. and dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. It’ll cost $65 a person and reservations are required by calling 316-263-2214, extension 105.