March of Dimes 16th Annual Signature Chef Auction

The March of Dimes Michigan chapter strives towards three main goals in their fundraising and advocacy initiatives: improving the health of babies in our state, supporting moms-to-be and providing comfort to families that have newborns in intensive care units (NICU).  Every year, there are over a half million babies born too early in the United States, with 15,340 of those in Michigan.

Last week, DeVos Place in downtown Grand Rapids played host to the 16th Annual March of Dimes Signature Chef Auction.  An elegant evening filled with approximately 20 local chefs, a silent auction, and a live auction, the Signature Chef Auction raised over $252,000 this year towards the March of Dimes mission.

Each of the restaurants and featured chefs at the Signature Chef Auction showcased beautiful and equally delicious samples.  My favorites were from Chef Jenna Arcidiacono from Amore Trattoria Italiana, Chefs Jeremy and Jamie Paquin from Mia and Grace, and Chef Mark Noseda II from Twisted Rooster.  Chef Arciadiacono produced wonderful chocolate truffles rolled in toffee pieces, Chefs Paquin made cheese stuffed dates with candied walnuts and cheesecake pops dipped in milk chocolate, and Chef Noseda featured a lemon couscous salad, truffle macaroni and cheese, and a PB & J tiramisu.

Most importantly, the Signature Chef Auction brought in a crowd of wonderful supporters, a highlighted March of Dimes family, and an astounding amount of money towards helping promote and sustain healthy babies in Michigan.  This year’s Ambassador Family is the Goodell family of Grand Rapids.

Parents David and Amber, along with son Christopher, welcomed daughter Alice early at 35 weeks.  Alice developed with gastroschisis, a condition where her abdominal organs developed outside of her body.  Spending weeks in the NICU at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital and a plethora of financial help and additional support from March of Dimes, Alice is now a perfectly healthy 16 month old and a great example of the success behind the March of Dimes mission.  As Amber Goodell expressed, “Alice is our miracle and this entire experience has been a lesson in gratitude. Not everyone is as fortunate as us and as a result, we will be life-long supporters of the March of Dimes.”

As a part of the $252,000 raised at this year’s Signature Chef Auction, the Louis Benton Steakhouse package of an “Around the World” dinner for 60 people sold for a record-setting $10,000.

For more information or to donate to March of Dimes, visit Signature Chef Auction Grand Rapids.

What ways does your community support healthy babies and healthy families?

Photo credit: Kristen Coppens

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