City Harvest drivers with Executive Director Jilly Stephens and Cynthia Nixon
New York's culinary community gathered Wednesday night at Cipriani 42nd Street for City Harvest's 17th annual An Evening of Practical Magic gala event and silent auction. Hosted by Cynthia Nixon and honoring innovative media mogul and philanthropist, Bill Koenigsberg, the evening was full of stars, but none shone more brightly than the work and efforts of those who work so hard to feed and educate New York's hungry at City Harvest.
The evening raised $1.5M both through tickets and tables, a silent auction, and a not-so-silent auction of luxe packages from some of the city's star chefs. Donatella Arpaia got things off to a great start, as someone closed the bidding at $45K for her "Taste of Italy" package, which included a reservation for eight at Rao's and a pizza-making seminar at her pizzeria. Another lucky guest will go surfing with Ditch Plains' Marc Murphy out on the East End, and afterward he'll prepare a dinner for 10 at the winner's home.
Bidding for Michael White's services got fast and furious, and the big-hearted chef said he would double down if the two top bidders could put up matching $35K bids...which they did! But the "wow" moment came when Eric Ripert took to the auction block, and reminded us how lucky we all are not to have to worry where our family's next meal would come from, and at the end of his inspirational speech bidding for his custom-designed tasting menu prepared in the winner's home closed at an astounding $80K. We salute City Harvest for all of the good work they do to make New York a better place.