Stop AIDS/Dining Out for Life tonight
Go out to eat tonight. Even if you can’t afford it, have someone take you out because tonight is Dining Out for Life, the Stop AIDS Project‘s super-awesome fundraiser — a brilliant idea where restaurants citywide agree to be part of the evening and donate 25% of that evening’s meals to the Stop AIDS Project. All you do is show up, eat and chat with the volunteers. And then somewhere, someone living with HIV/AIDS gets a meal delivered, or something else they really, really need. The volunteers are key to the whole experience — after you’re seated, someone sweet and chatty shows up at your table and explains the fundraiser, tells you how to donate more if you like, and what prizes you can win by giving an extra donation. The prizes are no small chump change, either: this year prizes include free airfare anywhere in the US for two, free tickets to Hawaii for two, wine club membership, a free year at Gold’s Gym and more. Last year volunteers here helped raise over $150,000.
In fact, that was my intro to this yearly do-gooder dining experience; a friend was volunteering and his co-volunteer dropped out and he asked me to understudy. It was awesome! We hosted the Capri Ristorante in the Castro and it was a blast — I’d never been to the Capri before and got a chance to meet the family that runs it, and we stayed late with a party of friends drinking chianti into the night after the fundraiser was over. The next year I returned to the Capri as a diner to see it staffed by Sisters! Sure, we’d been outdone, but I practically had a Sister in my lap by the end of the meal so I was quite happy regardless.
Here is the list of participating restaurants tonight in SF. So go out tonight and join people all over SF in this awesome tradition — and if you ever want to co-staff a Dining Out for Life evening, drop me a line. I’d do it again in a red-hot, HIV/AIDS lifesaving minute.