Palisadians Sue and Anthony Marguleas Co-Chair Cal Spirit Fundraiser
By SARAH SHMERLING | Editor-in-Chief
Sue Marguleas—an Alphabet Streets resident and decades-long supporter of American Cancer Society—is co-chairing the upcoming California Spirit gourmet food, wine and spirits fundraiser on September 10.
This year’s rendition of the event, which will be virtual for the second year in a row, will be hosted by Wolfgang Puck.
“Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck first launched the California Spirit Gourmet Food and Wine fundraiser in 1984 in partnership with Sherry Lansing, the first woman to head a Hollywood movie studio,” according to a statement from event organizers. “The two are reuniting to host the 37th California Spirit benefiting the American Cancer Society.”
American Cancer Society, reported to be the largest private funder of cancer research in the United States, has more than $5 billion invested in research for cancer prevention, detection and treatment.
Attendees will enjoy a “star-studded evening,” as well as a multi-course meal, curated by Puck.
“We’re ecstatic that Wolfgang Puck is hosting this year’s event, and we’ll be gathering friends and family together for a dinner party to enjoy his fabulous food,” Marguleas shared. “We hope others will do the same and join us to raise funds for this important cause.”
Marguleas is co-chairing the event for the second year with husband Anthony, founder of Amalfi Estates.
“The Marguleas’ love story is also a cancer success story,” according to the statement. “The two met when 26-year-old Anthony was battling rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare, soft tissue cancer typically found in pediatric patients, and Sue was assigned as his primary nurse.”
Another former patient of Sue’s at Stanford Children’s Hospital, Tara Hamilton, will be speaking at this year’s event after the two reconnected on Facebook. Hamilton was in the hospital between the ages of 8 to 12, according to event organizers, and had a 10-15% survival prognosis.
For the 2021 iteration of California Spirit, joining Puck and Lansing will be Honorary Chair Phil Rosenthal, the Emmy Award-winning creator, writer and executive producer of “Everyone Loves Raymond,” as well as the star of Netflix series “Somebody Feed Phil.”
“The annual fundraiser brings together top chefs, restaurants and philanthropic foodies to promote progress in the fight against cancer, all while enjoying the best of Los Angeles’ food and wine scene,” the statement read.
Over the years, California Spirit has raised more than $16 million to support American Cancer Society, which operates with the mission to “save lives, celebrate lives and lead the fight for a world without cancer.”
Returning this year to produce the event is former “Iron Chef America” judge Billy Harris, with a dining experience that features master mixologist Charlotte Voisey. There will be expert wine pairings, a musical performance by Jac Ross and auction that will go live on September 3: In 2020, one auction item was a French getaway to Chateau St. Philippe for 20 guests.
“The cancer death rate has declined 31%, and that’s due to a lot of hard work and support from so many people,” “Master Chef” finalist and long-time California Spirit volunteer Derrick Fox shared. “However, it’s still not enough when you lose a loved one or hear your best friend say, ‘I’m living life three months at a time … ’ I had that exact conversation just this past month. One in two men and one in three women will develop cancer in their lifetime, and it is a gut-wrenching statistic. Cancer patients need our help now more than ever.”
2021 sponsors include Houlihan Lokey, Amalfi Estates, Don Levin Trust and Edna & Tom Gordon, SoCal Gas, Sherry Lansing Foundation, Phil and Monica Rosenthal, the Stephenson family, Torrance Memorial Medical Center, Los Angeles Magazine, Santa Monica Daily Press, The Hollywood Reporter, KTLA 5, KJazz and AuburnJames Winery.
Attendees will receive a gourmet meal by Puck, cocktails, wine and sparkling water. The menu includes items like a salad with char-grilled summer peaches, whipped feta, mint, walnut granola and boysenberry verjus. The main course is roast jidori chicken with red kale, maitake mushroom quinoa salad and summer gremolata.
The dining experience will take place on Friday, September 10, between 6:30 and 8:30 p.m.
“Though we can’t be together just yet as a large group, we promise to deliver the exciting, interactive and delicious experience you know and love,” according to the California Spirit website.
Tickets are on sale now and available at calspirit.org.
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