Sixteen chefs from some of Central Florida’s best restaurants accepted a unique challenge issued by Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Florida for their Appetite for the Arches fundraiser held on March 7 at the Orlando World Center Marriott. The concept? Use McDonald’s® ingredients to create a signature dish. In the event’s second year, over 500 guests sampled gourmet creations such as filet of fish tacos and fried chicken terrine with truffled egg puree, each served with a wine pairing. Additionally, mixologists from Cask & Larder and The Ravenous Pig prepared signature cocktails with McDonald’s® ingredients.
Participating restaurants included: 4Rivers Smokehouse, Cask & Larder, Chef’s Table at the Edgewater, Cuisiniers Catering, Emeril’s Tchoup Chop, Hamilton’s Kitchen, K Restaurant, LUMA on Park, Orlando World Center Marriott, Paxia Modern Mexican & Tequila Lounge, Ravello at Four Seasons Orlando, SeaWorld Parks & Resorts Orlando, The Ravenous Pig, The Rusty Spoon, The Smiling Bison, and Txokos Basque Kitchen.
Here is a brief photo synopsis of this inspiring and delicious gala. For the detailed photo coverage please click HERE.
The event, presented by the Central Florida McDonald’s Association, raised nearly $180,000 for the two Ronald McDonald Houses in Orlando and the families they serve. One of those families was there to talk about how the charity has been a part of their healing process. Sixteen year old Emma Kleckner, who was diagnosed with a rare condition that causes debilitating pain, addressed event guests and shared how her experience staying at the Ronald McDonald House helped put her on the road to recovery. “Being at the Ronald McDonald House, I was able to stay focused on getting better. I was able to have the support of other families. Likewise, we were able to support them,” said Emma.
Families who stay at Ronald McDonald House are asked to make a small donation of $20 per night. However, 70 percent of families are unable to contribute anything towards their stay. The organization promises to never turn away anyone due to an inability to donate— a promise that is upheld thanks in part to funds raised at Appetite for the Arches.
About Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida: Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida finds, creates and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children and families. The cornerstone program, the Ronald McDonald House®, provides a home away from home that offers comfort and care to families with children receiving treatment at local hospitals and medical facilities in Orlando. There are two Ronald McDonald Houses in Orlando— one on the campus of Florida Hospital for Children and one on the campus of Arnold Palmer Medical Center. Since opening in 1996, the two Houses have served over 22,000 families. A third Ronald McDonald House will open in December 2015 on the campus of Nemours Children’s Hospital in Lake Nona.