Miss A Columnist

Colleen McNicholas is a Chicago South Sider who frequently wanders the streets of the windy city. She is always on the lookout for the best food and adventures this city has to offer. She is a Columbia College Chicago grad and is a marketing/PR professional. A few years ago, Colleen realized how many limitations she was putting on her life and decided she needed a change. She created a bucket list back in 2011 and has been following that bucket list ever since. Now, Colleen finally feels like she is living the life she has always wanted. When not working, volunteering, or trying new restaurants, she enjoys playing the guitar, fashion, going to concerts, running races, and meeting new people. Colleen is also a big thrill seeker: from extreme zip lining, to helicopter rides, to whale watching in Alaska, all the way to skydiving. Colleen wants to inspire people to take risks, try new things, and enjoy every second of life.

Recap: The 18th Annual Grand Chef’s Gala For Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

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(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

On Friday, January 30, 2015, The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation hosted their 18th Annual Grand Chef’s Gala. This event was presented by Fairmont Hotels and Resorts and honored Culinary Elite with the Jean Banchet Awards for their culinary talents. Some of the restaurants at this year’s event included: 42 Grams, Billy Sunday, El Ideas, Fat Rice, Grace, Jellyfish, Vie, Two, NoMI, Mindy’s Hot Chocolate, and more.

Chicago’s Top chefs gathered for the Dubai themed evening to prepare their signature dishes for over 750 guests. Some of these top chefs included: Fabio Viviani, Lee Wolen, and Jimmy Bannos. The fun-filled evening was filled with various activities for attendees to enjoy. There was dancing, live musical entertainment, raffles, and a premium live and silent auction.

This is one of my personal favorite charity events to attend, it has a very unique twist compared to how normal galas are run. The event is very much like being at the Oscars. The Gala recognizes Chicago’s top culinary chefs for all of their hard work and dedication thought the year. Some of the awards included: Chef of the Year, Pastry Chef of the Year, Rising Chef of the Year, Best New Restaurant, Restaurant of the Year presented by the Illinois Restaurant Association, and more.

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(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

Guests in the younger crowd wanting to get in on the fun, had the chance to swing by the Nightcap Committee’s Nightcap Event to try some dishes from great Chicago restaurants such as Cheesie’s and Carnivale.

The organization anticipated raising $600,000 for the event. The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation by far deserves it. This charity has come a long way and continues to make great progress. Back in the 1950’s children diagnosed with this disease would normally not live long enough to attend elementary school. Thanks to all of the foundation supported research over the years, people with the disease are living into their 40s and even longer!

Cystic Fibrosis is a genetic disease that has affected 30,000 children and adults here in the United States. Cystic Fibrosis makes it incredibly difficult for those with the disease to even breathe or eat due to their repository system and digestive track both being compromised by Cystic Fibrosis.

Be sure to keep an eye out for this event next year! It is one of the best and heartwarming ways to kick off Chicago Restaurant Week!

Picasion.Com

(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

Picasion.Com

(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

Picasion.Com

(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

Picasion.Com

(Photo Credit: Galdones Photography)

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