$19,351 Raised from Winterfest!

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United Way of Lake County’s 5th Annual Women’s Winterfest & Holiday Food Tasting Fundraiser Raises a Record $19,351

December 13, 2016 – Mentor, OH –United Way of Lake County’s (UWLC’s) Women’s Leadership Council raised $19,351 at its 5th Annual Women's Winterfest & Holiday Food Tasting Fundraiser on Thursday, December 1st from 5:30 pm – 9 pm at NOAH’s Event Venue in Mentor.

The fundraiser has more than doubled the amount raised in just two years. Last year the fundraiser raised $12,781 and two years ago, in 2014, it raised $9,082. “The popularity of the event just continues to grow,” states Tami Lewis, Director of Marketing and Communication at UWLC.

The event is about women helping women, and tickets for this year’s Winterfest fundraiser sold out in just two weeks. They went on sale mid-October and were gone by October 31st. “Based on the positive feedback we received after last year’s event, we had a feeling this year’s event would be big, but no one anticipated the response we received. We’re very grateful to everyone who came out in support of Lake County women and girls in need,” Lewis said.

Ali Hughes of Polychem, and Chair of UWLC’s Women’s Leadership Council, states that “Our Women’s Leadership Council is a dynamic group of women who’ve worked hard giving back to the community this past year. We’re thrilled to be able to use the money raised from this event to help women and girls in need right here in Lake County.”

Over the past two years UWLC’s Women’s Leadership Council has awarded a total of over $38,500 in grants to local agencies for programs which align with their mission. The council works to positively impact the lives of women and girls through the philanthropic efforts of giving, advocating, educating and volunteering.

This year’s Winterfest featured a large Chinese auction, a wine pull, DJ, door prizes and food tastings from a large variety of local restaurants.

According to Lewis, NOAH’s Event Venue is beautiful and our guests love it there, but the major draw is the food. A total of 16 area restaurants participated in the event, offering menu samplings to guests. An additional 4 venues provided food trays. “The food was amazing and there was such a large assortment,” stated Maureen Pross, Vice President of UWLC’s Women’s Leadership Council and Director of Marketing at Lake Health. Participating restuarants included:

·         Aladdin’s Eatery

·         Billy’s – A Cappelli Martini Bar

·         Cakes to You

·         Chik-fil-A

·         Eat’n Park

·         Guillio Bonazza’s

·         J & J Catering

·         Lure Bistro

·         Pastina Rustic Italian

·         Primozz Restaurant & Catering

·         Pub Frato

·         Red Hawk Grille

·         Sky Bistro

·         Starbucks

·         SOL

·         Square Bistro

·         Tavern6

·         Tony Sacco’s

·         The Morehouse

·         Yours Truly

“And the women had the opportunity to win everything from designer handbags to 14K jewelry to beautiful scarves and gift baskets donated by local retailers and organizations.”  stated Pross.

The item that raised the most funds during the evening was an Italian leather tote bag donated by winners of the LeBron James’ produced Cleveland Hustles TV series that aired this past fall on CNBC. During the show, FOUNT opened their flagship store in Cleveland’s Gordon Square and just recently signed a lease for their first Columbus store. Husband and wife creative team Phillip and Jackie Wachter started FOUNT in 2013 where they began selling their bags at The Cleveland Flea. They now run their design and production house out of a large studio in Cleveland. “They are exceptional people – just lovely,” states Lewis. “Kind, down-to-earth, extremely hard working and giving. I’ve been rooting for them since they first started selling their bags, and The Classic Bellfield Tote they donated to us is still being talked about by guests.” she said.  “In an ironic twist, the winner of the tote walked into the event with her own FOUNT bag. It was completely different style, but what are the odds?!”

Event sponsors included The News-Herald, Advance OHIO, The Lubrizol Corporation, Stanley Steemer, Huntington, Avery Dennison, Lake Health and FirstEnergy.

UWLC’s Women’s Leadership Council welcomes new members. For more information, visit www.uwlc.org/wlc , call 440.639.1131 or email community@uwlc.org.

About United Way of Lake County

United Way of Lake County works to measurably improve the quality of people’s lives in Lake County. We do this by focusing on education, income and health; we believe these to be the building blocks of a good life. Giving to United Way is the best way to help the most people. Learn more about us by visiting www.uwlc.org.

We help people.