EVENT: Pirates of the Genesee - The 21st Annual Chocolate Ball to Benefit the Epilepsy Foundation
DATE: Saturday, February 3, 2007 6:00 pm to 1:30 am
LOCATION: Crowne Plaza Rochester, 70 State Street
ADMISSION: $125/ticket; corporate tables available
PURCHASE TICKETS: Call the Epilepsy Foundation at (585) 442-4430 or go to
SPECIAL ATTRACTIONS: Live-auction bidding on custom-baked chocolate cakes by prominent area pastry chefs; raffle drawing for a trip to the ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios vacation resort in Jamaica; silent auction; dancing to the live music of Atlas
EVENT SPONSORS First Niagara, VIP Travel, Morgan Stanley, Eber Bros., RG&E, & UNDERWRITERS Woodcliff North Associates
On Saturday, February 3, 2007, the Crowne Plaza Rochester will be transformed into a pirate ship for Pirates of the Genesee - the 21st Annual Chocolate Ball to benefit the Epilepsy Foundation. The event begins at 6:00 pm with a champagne cocktail reception as guests sample award-winning cakes and bid on items in a silent auction. More than 600 guests are expected to attend.
A highlight of the event comes after dinner when well-known Rochester auctioneer Austin Warner takes the floor and opens the bidding on the many unique chocolate cakes created exclusively for the Chocolate Ball by more than a dozen pastry chefs from Rochester-area restaurants, bakeries, and other establishments.
The annual fundraising event benefits the Epilepsy Foundation's programs and services to approximately 10,000 individuals in the area with epilepsy and related disorders (including traumatic brain injury and developmental disability). The Epilepsy Foundation's services include family and individual support groups, employment services, residential programs, case management and service coordination, community education, and a residential summer camp for children and teenagers.
Honorary Chairs Daniel and Carol Mossien (Fairport) developed this year's Chocolate Ball theme, Pirates of the Genesee, to play on the resurging popularity of pirates as well as a nod to the pirates who roamed the Genesee River region of upstate New York in the 1800s.
"The formula for a successful fundraising gala contains two key elements - a worthy cause that does good work in the community and a fun-filled ambience that appeals to the imaginations of those who attend," says Carol Mossien. "We're pleased to say that the Chocolate Ball has both."
Newcomers and long-time participants are featured in this year's Chocolate Ball competition, including chefs from New York Wine & Culinary Center (Canandaigua), The Lodge at Woodcliff (Perinton), Whatcha Got Cookin (Fairport), Rochester EOC, Designed Elegance (Spencerport), JonJohn's Specialty Desserts (Rochester), Grand Finales (Fairport), Carol's Cucina (Henrietta), Scheer Delights (Rochester), Carey Lake (Walworth), and Sweet Tastes (Rochester); in addition, chefs from several private clubs are expected to participate.
The categories for judging are Taste (1st, 2nd, and 3rd place), Showpiece (1st, 2nd, and 3rd place), and Grand Prize - to be decided by a panel of professionals in the culinary industry. The People's Choice winner is determined by those who attend the gala.
All of the cakes will be judged in the Taste category, but only those chefs who choose to enter will be judged in the Showpiece category - how a cakes looks: its design, structure, and appearance consistent with the Pirates of the Genesee theme.
The Grand Prize winner will receive a cash award donated by Watermark Specialty Foods (East Rochester), a distributor of specialty foods (such as Noel Chocolate) to the food service industry. Watermark supplies each pastry chef with the chocolate used in the competition.