By: Lidia Evita, Staff Writer for World Liberty TV
Annual Event Raises More Than $120K, Supports Programs/Services to Support Thousands of Children and Adults with Developmental Disabilities, Event Honors “Chefs of the Year” Frank Wu, President, Queens College; Brett Swanson, Grubhub; and the leadership team at Stop & Shop—Presentation of Claire Shulman Spirit of Community Award to Detective Tanya Duhaney, Community Affairs Bureau, NYPD South.
Queens Centers for Progress (QCP) brought together more than 500 people for the 27th annual “Evening of Fine Food” on February 28, an evening celebrating community, resilience, and the value of giving. The in-person event at Terrace on the Park in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, Queens, raised more than $120,000 to support the longtime organization’s programs and services, assisting more than 1,200 individuals with developmental disabilities to lead more independent lives. Attending elected officials included Queens Borough President Donovan Richards and New York City Council Member James Gennaro.
Participating restaurants included: Aigner Chocolates, Althea’s Tropical Delights LLC, Austin’s Ale House, Bevo’s Kitchen, LLC, Biski’s Bakery, Blueberry’s Bakery, Bourbon Street, Café Renis, Citizen Cider, Co Co La Reve, Filipiniana Restaurant & Catering, Four Four South Village, Havana Central, Il Bacco NY, Kaieteur Restaurant, Khalil’s Biryani House, MadeFresh Organic, Marbella Restaurant & Catering, Mezze – A Mediterranean Experience, MumsKitchens NYC, My Kitchen Events, Neir’s Tavern, One Station Plaza, PaNash Eurosoul, Papazzio Restaurant & Catering, Philly Pretzel Factory – Forest Hills, QB Lobster House, RECONNECT CAFÉ at Thomas Berry Place, Remy’s Italian Restaurant, Rincon Salvadoreno Restaurant, Rockaway Brewing Company, Schmidt’s Candy, Stop & Shop, Taste of Nepal, Taverna Kyklades, The Wine Room of Forest Hills, Trattoria 35 and Zaab Zaab (as well as returning chefs Frank Macchio of the Flushing Rotary Club and Dan Leone of QPTV).
PIX11 Reporter Greg Mocker emceed the evening, as QCP honored three “Chefs of the Year,” people who have made an impact and a difference in the community: Frank Wu, President, Queens College; Brett Swanson, Community Affairs & Social Impact, Grubhub; and recognized the leadership team at Stop & Shop. In addition to being honored, the “Chefs” served their community in a different way — by cooking a family specialty!
QCP also presented the Claire Shulman Spirit of Community Award to Detective Tanya Duhaney, Community Affairs Bureau, NYPD South. Other special guests included writer and host Rick Bedrosian (I Could Eat), food writer, author and culinary tour guide Joe DiStefano (111 Places in Queens That You Must Not Miss), and Msgr. Jamie Gigantiello (Breaking Bread).
“For more than 70 years, QCP has been helping adults and children to live their best lives,” said QCP Executive Director Terri Ross. “Core to our mission is the belief that all people can learn and that everyone – in spite of any developmental disability – can make meaningful choices about their lives.”
“It was my pleasure to support QCP because their work makes a huge difference in people’s lives and in our society,” said Diamond Sponsor Veronica Tsang, Executive Vice President at Cathay Bank, President of the Board of Flushing Town Hall, and the Chairperson of Futures in Education. Tsang, a previous QCP Chef of the Year in 2013, added, “I personally only support those organizations where I can see where my donation goes and the impact the organizations make in the communities they serve. QCP serves clients of all ages and level of challenges with dignity and care. They provide a safe environment for their clients to come to and to live in. I was very impressed with how happy their clients were when I visited their center. I asked, how can I not support them?”
The festivities included an exceptional and engaging dining experience featuring culinary delicacies from the finest restaurants and beverage purveyors in the area. As guests mingled, they sampled gourmet foods, and enjoyed the variety of beverages offered. They also enjoyed the smooth sounds of Jim Altamore, played Blackjack and Roulette at the Casino, participated in the silent auction, and took “selfies” in a Le Selfie photo booth.
“What an extraordinary evening! Nothing tops the strength and spirit of a community that comes together for a great cause!” said QCP Director of Development Wendy Gennaro. “We are extremely grateful to the Restaurant community, our Sponsors, our Board of Directors, and everyone who came out to support QCP!“
In addition to Veronica Tsang, this year’s sponsors were: Long Island Employee Benefits Services and Mutual of America (Golden Delight Sponsors); Gerald J. Caliendo Architects, Grubhub, Merritt Engineering Consulting, New York Community Bancorp, Inc., Queens College, Resorts World NYC, and Stop & Shop (Silver Spatula Sponsors); Champion Elevator, Corp., D & F Development Group, Maspeth Federal Savings, Mr. T Carting, QPTV, and TotalCareRX (Bronze Grill Sponsors); The Rotary Club of Flushing (Casino Sponsor); Ray-Block Stationary, TD Bank, and Zara Realty (Entertainment Sponsor); and, BDO, Koeppel Auto Group, Law Office of Donna Furey, and Raymond Chan Architects (Selfie Booth Sponsors).
About Queens Centers for Progress (QCP) ;Queens Centers for Progress is committed to providing person-centered services and supports to children and adults who have developmental disabilities. The goal of these services and supports is to promote independence, community involvement, and quality of life. Learn more:
It was a well attended event. it was World Liberty TV, Teams 10th annual appearance at the QCP Event. To donate, sponsor or exhibit at the next QCP Event contact QCP Director of Development Wendy Gennaro by emailing WPhaffGennaro@queenscp.org