Posts Tagged ‘Coral Gables Community Foundation’

Board Appreciation & Installation Reception

Posted on: February 1st, 2013 by mbokor

Swearing in of board officers

The Coral Gables Community Foundation’s annual installation of officers and directors was held recently at Seasons 52.

Carlos F. Garcia, CPA, began his two-year term as chair with a board retreat prior to the installation at which directors discussed community and foundation initiatives.

Attorney William A. Bonn completed his term as chair and continues on the board as immediate past chair; as such, he plans to help lead the foundation’s development efforts.

Coral Gables Mayor Jim Cason did the honors of swearing in first the executive committee and then the full board at the reception, which was held Monday evening, Jan. 28.

Executive Director Andria Hanley thanked Mr. Bonn for his two years of service and presented him with a framed photo collage representing his years of wonderful leadership.

Serving with Mr. Garcia and Mr. Bonn as executive officers are Chair-elect Tony Rogers, JD; Secretary Jerry Santeiro, Treasurer David Olazabal and Asst. Secretary/Treasurer Karelia Carbonell.

Members of the board of directors are John Allen; Marc Berenfeld, CPA; Pat Blanco, BSN, MPH, FACHE; Amanda Bonifay, CPA; Catherine Grieve, Esq.; Andy Gomez, Ph.D.; Zeke Guilford, Esq.; Michael Harris; Vicente Lago; Matthew Meehan; Jason Neal; Lee Osiason, Esq.; Frank Quesada, Esq.; Aura Reinhardt; Mark Trowbridge and Marielena Villamil.

Guests included University of Miami Director of Advancement Sergio Gonzalez, City Commissioner Ralph Cabrera and past foundation Chair Jeannett Slesnick.

Seasons 52, 321 Miracle Mile, kindly provided the venue and delicious flat-bread pizzas.

Founded by community leaders in 1991, the Coral Gables Community Foundation fosters programs and initiatives that enhance the quality of life for people living and working in the “City Beautiful.”

Photos by Betty Alavarez / Events Photographer

Matthew Meehan, Pat Blanco, Tony Rogers

Marielena Villamil, Tony Rogers, Karelia Martinez Carbonell, Jeannett Slesnick

Swearing in of board members

Sergio Gonzalez, Ralph Cabrera, John AllenZeke Guilford, John Allen, Bill Bonn

Ruben Ceballos, Bill Bonn and Andria Hanley



4th annual Tour of Kitchens is sold out!

Posted on: January 24th, 2013 by mbokor

2013 Coral Gables TOUR of KITCHENS logo

The 4th annual Tour of Kitchens presented by Apollo Bank is sold out.  

The fourth annual Tour of Kitchens, presented by Apollo Bank, takes place on Saturday, Jan. 26, and will showcase eight of Coral Gables’ finest residential kitchens, offering food tastings, table setting displays and home-related merchandise available for sale.

With 10 destinations in all, the tour begins any time from 10 a.m. on with breakfast bites, coffee and mimosas at Snaidero kitchens + design showroom, 4110 Ponce de Leon Blvd. At check-in, tour participants will be given a program booklet containing the tour map. (Addresses are not disclosed until the day of the tour.)

Homes on this self-guided tour will be open until 2 p.m., and participants may visit the homes in the order they choose. Last entry to the tour homes will be 1:45 p.m.

The tour finishes with a closing event in the Books & Books courtyard, 265 Aragon Ave., from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m., featuring champagne, desserts, a display on kitchen trends and cookbook authors who will meet guests and sign books. Honorary Chair and Coral Gables’ First Lady Carmen Cason will also attend the closing event to meet and greet participants.

Tour tickets are $50 per person and all-inclusive of food and beverages, including the closing event, and may be purchased at, the starting point (Snaidero) on the day of the tour, or at the Giant Gables Gourmet Garage Sale, 1217 Granada Blvd. Participants may also buy tickets by calling the Coral Gables Community Foundation at 305-446-9670. Tickets will be mailed to you (or can be available at will call).

Proceeds benefit the foundation and the Coral Gables Senior High School Culinary Arts Program. Apollo Bank is the Presenting Sponsor. Others include Harborfront Landing, Snaidero kitchens + design, Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables, and the Alma Jennings Foundation.

This year BikeWalkCoralGables will provide tour participants with a bicycle-ride option. Anyone interested in taking the tour by bicycle will be led by trained bicycle leaders using safe routes to each home on the tour. For more information or to make reservations, contact

One of the eight homes features the Giant Gourment Garage Sale, a partnership with Les Dames d’Escoffier Miami. The Giant Gourmet Garage Sale will be held at 1217 Granada Blvd. from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This is the home of local celebrity dessert chef Lucila Venet-Jimenez, whose business “Sweet Art by Lucila” is very popular for wedding cakes and other special occasions. Sweet Art by Lucila has locations at Red/Bird, The Falls, Pembroke Pines and Doral.

Admission to the Giant Gourmet Garage Sale is free; however, to gain admission to Lucila’s kitchen (featured on the tour) guests must have a Tour of Kitchens ticket (wristband). Tour tickets will also be sold at this location.

This everything-but-the-kitchen-sink garage sale offers new and gently used aprons, art, bake ware, baskets, bric-a-brac, candles, ceramics, china, collectibles, cookbooks, crystal, dish towels, flatware, gadgets, linens, napkins, pots and pans, small appliances, stemware, tins, Tupperware, vases and much more.

The Giant Gourmet Garage Sale also features the bountiful Dames Marketplace, offering locally grown fruit and vegetables, potted herbs, vegetable “starts,” prepared foods and baked goods-all homemade or homegrown by the chapter’s chef, caterer and farmer members.

Like  TOUR of KITCHENS on Facebook for more fun, creative inspiration on kitchen design, and other fun foodie-related news.  Follow @TOURofKITCHENS on twitter.

Thank you to all participants and sponsors!

Give the foodies on your list a designer-kitchen expedition

Posted on: December 18th, 2012 by mbokor


For the foodies on your holiday shopping list, tickets to the fourth annual Tour of Kitchens might be the ideal gift.

Visiting from six to 10 homes each year, the highly anticipated tour offers a variety of experiences: food tastings, cooking demonstrations, vendors offering kitchen-themed merchandise, table settings, cookbook author signings, celebrity chefs and a glimpse into some fabulous homes.

Committee co-chairs Pat Blanco and Donna Reno are excited to showcase great kitchens as well as artisan food and local chefs.

“Each year a group of volunteers coordinates this event for the community to enjoy. We are excited about a new cycling component this year.  A group of 30 to 40 members of “BikeWalkCoralGables” will travel from home to home via bicycle,” said Reno.

The self-guided Tour of Kitchens will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, at the Snaidero Kitchens + Design showroom, 4110 Ponce de Leon Blvd., where participants will enjoy breakfast treats, mimosas and coffee. Guests will also receive a map of tour stops. Free parking is available at nearby Coral Gables Senior High School.

Participants can visit any of the kitchens between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and enjoy food samplings along the way. A selection of homes will feature unique and stunning designer table settings that are sure to inspire.

The closing event will be held at Books & Books and will include a champagne-and-dessert reception with cookbook authors signing their books and visiting with tour patrons.

Tickets are $50 each and can be purchased online. Proceeds benefit the Coral Gables Community Foundation and the Coral Gables High School Culinary Arts Program.  For tickets or more information, contact the Coral Gables Community Foundation at 305-446-9670 or email

Burger lovers get their fill at 2nd annual Burgerliscious festival

Posted on: November 11th, 2012 by mbokor


Foodies savored gourmet burgers from over 20 of Coral Gables’ finest restaurants while enjoying live music and entertainment at the second annual Burgerliscious festival on Thursday, Nov. 8, at Fred B. Hartnett Ponce Circle Park.

“Burgerliscious showcases how great the culinary community is in Coral Gables. There’s something for everyone here,” said Mark Trowbridge, president and CEO of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce. “My favorite thing about Burgerliscious is the camaraderie amongst the restaurants. There’s a bit of friendly competition.”

Enjoying the cool weather and laid-back atmosphere, approximately 1,200 guests selected from an array of burgers and sliders, which they washed down with beer or soft drinks from 6 to 10 p.m. at the park, 2810 Ponce de Leon Blvd. The grounds were lined with tents and booths, showcasing an array of masterpiece burgers. Cars were sprinkled throughout the lawn, courtesy of South Motors BMW, giving guests a glance at the latest in automotive technology and luxury.

As they advanced from station to station, many guests stopped to pose for pictures. Popular photo-ops were the Ben & Jerry’s booth, featuring a carnival cutout of Jimmy Fallon showcasing his “Late Night Snack” ice cream, along with the Cool de Sac display, where Zaky, a costumed canine character, charmed guests.

Musical entertainment was provided by The Stage, featuring Mad World Orchestra and DJ Mayner. The Burgerliscious festival kicked off Miami Live Music Month, a premier program of the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Mad World Orchestra, a South Florida 80’s alternative music band, played a set of crowd-pleasing songs, including With or Without You by U2 and Surrender by Cheap Trick. DJ Mayner followed with Michael Jackson hits and some party favorites of the Miami club scene.

True to its name, Burgerliscious put some of the Gables’ juiciest sliders and burgers in the mouths of guests. However, the event was not limited to traditional beef-made burgers.

Vegetarian and fish selections, such as salads, sushi, and chips with humus, were also available. After sampling the entrees, guests could select dessert options of brownies or ice cream.

“The food was great! I tried just about everything,” said Regina Starrett, whose favorite slider was the non-traditional ahi tuna burger from Sushi Maki. “The people here are wonderful and so is the music. It’s very casual, fun, and uplifting.”

After sampling each burger, guests and a panel of judges, made up of food writers, chefs and civic leaders, voted for their favorite.

Among the judges was Mayor Jim Cason, who called himself the “bürgermeister” (“mayor” in German), throughout the night as he sported a cheeseburger-style hat. “This is a fabulous event that brings together people from all over South Florida,” said Mayor Cason. “It’s truly a beautiful time and lots of fun.”

The Dome Restaurant Bar & Lounge won over the public’s taste buds with its tasty selections, earning it People’s Choice title, while the burgers from Shula’s 347 Grill were crowned Best in Bun.

Additional participants included Angelique Euro Café, The Bar, Burger and Beer Joint, The Café @ Coral Gables | Books & Books, Christy’s Restaurant, Coral Gables Senior High School Culinary Arts Academy, Crave, 1862 Room at the Westin Colonnade Coral Gables, Elevation Burger, JohnMartin’s Irish Pub & Restaurant, Morton’s the Steakhouse Pao Town, Pincho Factory, Rok:Brgr, Route 9, Seasons 52, Shake Shack, Sushi Maki and Tarpon Bend Raw Bar & Grill

The Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce, Samuel Adams and the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau partnered to present the event. A portion of the proceeds will also benefit the Coral Gables Community Foundation to help support local small businesses.

Burgerliscious was sponsored by Sam Adams, the city of Coral Gables, Brown-Forman Beverages, the Naked Grape and the Coral Gables Chamber.

Photos by Betty Alvarez / Events Photographer


Gables Foundation welcomes new board member: Dr. Andy Gomez

Posted on: November 11th, 2012 by mbokor


The Coral Gables Community Foundation recently welcomed a new board member, Dr. Andy S. Gomez, who serves as special assistant for international affairs at the University of Miami.

“I have seen and admire the work of the foundation in our community, which is very important,” said Dr. Gomez. “Chair Bill Bonn asked me to join the board and I could not turn it down.”

Dr. Gomez was born in Cuba and left the country with his family early in 1961. Now a resident of Coral Gables, he has come to develop a sincere adoration for “The City Beautiful.”

As a board member, Dr. Gomez intends to promote further community involvement throughout the Gables. He believes its active citizens, diversity and rich history are what make the Gables such an extraordinary place to live.

“Coral Gables is very special because [of its] citizen involvement,” said Dr. Gomez, who was recently selected as one of South Florida’s most influential Hispanics. “It has a great history and great people of all walks of life living in it.”

In addition to his new role at the Coral Gables Community Foundation, Dr. Gomez holds an array of prestigious positions, many of which attest to his dedication of the Gables.

He serves on the board of directors of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce (as UM’s representative) and on the city of Coral Gables Budget and Audit Advisory Committee.

Dr. Gomez has also held many leadership positions at UM, serving as dean of the School of International Studies from 2001-2004 and assistant provost for planning, institutional research and assessment from 2005-2012. He was also on the board of trustees of the Southern Association of Colleges and Universities from 2008-2012.

An academic scholar in the field of Cuban studies, Dr. Gomez is a senior fellow at UM’s Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies. His involvement with Cuban studies ranges from teaching various courses at UM to lecturing extensively at national and international conferences. A consultant on Cuban issues to ABC News, Dr. Gomez is also a member of the Cuba Corps Advisory Board and was a Nonresident Senior Fellow for the Brookings Institution’s Cuban Foreign Policy Program from 2008-2010.

“The Coral Gables Community Foundation is very fortunate to have a new board member with the breadth of experience and the depth of educational background of Dr. Gomez,” said Mr. Bonn, the foundation chair. “We will value the viewpoints expressed by Dr. Gomez in his new role on our board and look forward to working with him to make Coral Gables an even better city in which to live.”

Dr. Gomez said he is looking forward to channeling all of his experience into his work with the Coral Gables Community Foundation as he continues to emphasize the importance of community participation.

“Every person at some time in their life should get involved in their community in some way,” Dr. Gomez said. “It is what makes our democracy so great.”