Helping Out for Jan. 22, 2014

Helping Out highlights some of the many charitable events and activities going on in the Charleston area. Submissions should be sent to

Jeff Henderson will be the featured guest chef at a dinner on Jan. 29 benefitting the TBonz Foundation, which supports youth organizations throughout the Charleston region. The dinner will feature five courses, two of which will be personally prepared by Henderson, and feature premium certified Angus beef cuts. Guests will receive a copy of Henderson’s newest book, If You Can See It, You Can Be It: 12 Street-Smart Recipes for Success, and have the opportunity to have it autographed. The event begins at 6:30 p.m. at Liberty Tap Room and Grill, 1028 Johnnie Dodds Blvd. in Mount Pleasant. Tickets are $50 per person or $90 per couple; call 843-971-7777.

Henderson will team up with several chefs from the Homegrown Hospitality Group for the five-course charity dinner, including Pearlz Oyster Bar Executive Chef Victoria Neikirk, Liberty Tap Room & Grill Executive Chef Steven Stackle, and Kaminsky’s pastry chef Ihite McDonald.

The former executive chef of Cafe Bellagio in Las Vegas, Henderson is an award-winning chef, the author of Cooked: My Journey from the Streets to the Stove and a television personality. He is currently starring in the nationally syndicated Family Style, where he shows how making good choices in the kitchen can lead to life-changing experiences for the entire family. After growing up on the tough streets of central Los Angeles and San Diego, he ran a large drug operation at age 19 and was incarcerated by age 24. While in prison, he discovered his passion for cooking and committed himself to turning his life around.

The Greater Charleston Restaurant Association Inc. will host the 31st annual Lowcountry Oyster Festival from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Boone Hall Plantation in Mount Pleasant. The Lowcountry Oyster Festival has been named one of the “top 20 events in the Southeast” by the Southeastern Tourism Society. This year the gates open at 10 a.m., and there will be an expanded children’s area, a VIP ticket upgrade option online and complimentary off-site parking shuttles.

Tickets to the event are $20 in advance and $25 at the gate. Tickets are available at, area Southcoast Community Banks, Boone Hall Farms or official visitors centers in Mount Pleasant and downtown Charleston.

The shuttle is a free service that will run 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from three Mount Pleasant locations: JB Edwards Elementary School, 885 Von Kolnitz Road; Laing Middle School, 1560 Mathis Ferry Road; and East Cooper Regional Medical Center, 2000 Hospital Drive.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit local charities including the Ronald McDonald House, Hollings Cancer Center, Hospitality Heroes, Shriners Hospitals for Children and the Charleston County Schools Science Materials Resource Center.

The new Sunoco APlus at Ladson and Jamison roads is encouraging customers in Charleston, Dorchester and Berkeley counties to donate to the Lowcountry Food Bank, with pledge cards available in stores through Jan. 31. Sunoco originally announced a match of donations up to $10,000, but the response from customers has been so enthusiastic, company officials announced it would increase the match to up to $15,000.

The drive augments the ongoing Caffeinate Charleston program in which Sunoco donates a portion of the proceeds from sales of its Lowcountry Blend coffee to Lowcountry Food Bank.

The Children's Museum of the Lowcountry welcomed its 1 millionth visitor, 4-year-old Emmilia Cance. Visitors have been counted since the museum's opening in September 2003. Cance and her family received a lifetime membership to the Children's Museum as well as a bag of goodies from the museum store.

The Charleston Friends of the Library has announced its 2014 book sale schedule. All proceeds benefit the Charleston County Library.

  • Otranto Regional Library Book Sale, March 7-8.
  • Main Library Book Sale, June 13-15.
  • John’s Island Regional Library Book Sale, July 25-26.
  • That Big Book Sale, Oct. 10-12 at Omar Shrine Auditorium, 176 Patriots Point Road in Mount Pleasant.
  • That Holiday Book Sale, Dec. 5-7 at Main Library, 68 Calhoun St. in Charleston.

Admission is free to all sales. Special member events will be held before each sale for The Charleston Friends of the Library members. To become a member, visit, or call 843-805-6882. Individual membership is $20 annually and will last through December 2014.

More than 500 fundraising and nonprofit professionals throughout South Carolina are expected to come together Feb. 10-12 at the Francis Marion Hotel in downtown Charleston for the SCANPO Nonprofit Summit, a conference focused on replicating best practices throughout the state.

Designed to allow attendees to customize their experience, the summit will offer workshops, concurrent sessions and curbside consulting and features three plenary sessions by people in the nonprofit sector. There will be two speakers from North Carolina: Gail Perry will present New Rules for Fundraising in Changing Times: Don’t Get Left Behind; and Roger Schwarz will present Smart Leaders, Smarter Teams. Local philanthropists George Stevens and David Farren will present Building Teams Beyond Your Walls to cap the event.

Registration is available online at Attendance is priced from $100 for one day to $345 for all three days for nonmembers.

The S.C. Association of Nonprofit Organizations brings together nonprofit leaders to strengthen the state’s entire nonprofit sector.

Dragon Boat Charleston, an organization that promotes physical and mental wellness among cancer survivors and their community, will host a luncheon for awareness and support on Thursday at Halls Chophouse, 434 King St. in Charleston. The event is open to the public. There will be a three-course meal by Executive Chef Matthew Neissner, a brief informative session, and drawings for door prizes from King Street businesses such as Le Creuset, Seeking Indigo and Natural Hideaway MediSpa. Doors open at 11:30 a.m., and lunch will be served at noon. Tickets are $29 per person and may be purchased at or by calling the ticket hotline at 800-838-3006.

Dragon Boat Charleston members and supporters take part in the ancient Chinese sport of dragon boating on the Ashley River. Members participate in five to six races per year and participate in off-season programs, such as yoga and nutrition, and numerous social and recreational gatherings.

PalmettoPride and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are teaming up for the seventh annual Francis Marion National Forest Cleanup at 8 a.m. on Feb. 1. Volunteers will meet at the Forest Service office, 2967 Steed Creek Road in Huger. They will then be sent to designated areas throughout the 260,000-acre forest. All cleanup supplies will be provided, and a cookout lunch will be served. To volunteer, contact Scott Morgan at 877-725-7733.

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