DALLAS, April 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Quinn, a 10-year-old girl with polycystic kidney disease, wished to go on a cruise and when the Maggiano's Little Italy® restaurant at Perimeter Mall in Atlanta learned they would be hosting her send-off party, the teammates threw an unforgettable bon voyage celebration – complete with a cake shaped like a cruise ship and all of Quinn's favorite Italian-American dishes. Memorable events like this take place every week in Maggiano's 44 restaurants nationwide during "Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish," truly capturing the essence of the brand's annual campaign.
Ten years and 50 chef features later, the generosity and passion of Maggiano's guests and teammates has helped make wishes come true for more than 400 children like Quinn and raise more than $3 million for Make-A-Wish, a nonprofit organization which grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. To commemorate the campaign's 10th anniversary, Maggiano's guests are invited to participate in new fundraising opportunities as well as some favorite traditions benefiting Make-A-Wish.
Today only, guests who visit a Maggiano's restaurant and make a $5 donation to Make-A-Wish will be sent home with a made-from-scratch, authentic Classic Pasta on the house. April 29 also marks World Wish Day®, which commemorates the wish that inspired the founding of Make-A-Wish. Participating guests can choose from a selection of handmade pastas and baked specialties, like Four Cheese Ravioli, Mom's Lasagna and Taylor Street Baked Ziti, to take and enjoy the next day for lunch or dinner.
"Each year we introduce new ways to give back through our 'Eat-A-Dish' campaign to keep the program fresh and relevant, but the brand's focus always remains the same – raise enough funds to grant at least one deserving child's wish per restaurant," said Steve Provost, president of Maggiano's Little Italy. "Since 2003, Maggiano's guests have helped us reach this goal, and in appreciation of their support and to celebrate the 10th annual campaign, we are extending our generous take-home Classic Pasta offer to all guests today when they make a $5 donation to Make-A-Wish."
Guests dining with the brand throughout the duration of the campaign, ending July 3, can enjoy a seasonal feature from the "Eat-A-Dish" menu, and in turn, Maggiano's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish for every entree purchased. Those patrons thirsty for something more can add $.50 to Maggiano's donation total when they refresh their palate with a glass of Beverly's Lemonade, a non-alcoholic beverage named after Maggiano's Wish Ambassador. Beverly's wish of a dream trip to Italy is being sponsored by the brand.
New this year to the "Eat-A-Dish" menu is a special Make-A-Wish Meal for Two. Guests can now extend their dining experience as well as their donation with this three-course meal, which includes the choice of an appetizer, flatbread or two side salads, two entrees and a dessert. For every Make-A-Wish Meal for Two ordered from the campaign menu, Maggiano's will donate $5.
In addition to these giving opportunities, Maggiano's will sell their star-shaped cards, which feature inspirational stories of Make-A-Wish children. In the 10-year campaign history, more than 150,000 star cards have been sold. Guests can purchase a decorative star card for an amount of their choosing with a 100 percent of each sale benefiting Make-A-Wish. Between now and July 3, the brand will also donate $1 to Make-A-Wish per "Like" on Maggiano's Facebook page, up to $25,000.
"Throughout the past decade, Maggiano's has raised more than $3 million, allowing Make-A-Wish the privilege of granting the heartfelt wishes of more than 400 children with life-threatening medical conditions," said David A. Williams, Make-A-Wish America president and chief executive officer. "Each Maggiano's teammate is a key ingredient to making wishes come true and providing so many others with the inspiration and opportunity to help our mission reach more children in the community."
The "Eat-A-Dish" menu is available for dine-in or carryout and features the following dishes:
- Bolognese Ravioli Fritte – Italian seasoned beef, fresh herbs, white wine and ricotta cooked until golden brown with marinara
- Spring Vegetable Ravioli – fresh asparagus, peppers, carrots, basil and asiago cheese served in a lemon cream sauce
- Stuffed Chicken Florentine – spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, caramelized onion, Italian cheeses, and angel hair aglio olio tossed in a garlic and white wine sauce
- Grilled Sirloin Pizzaiola – pepperoni, roasted peppers, and mozzarella served with crispy red potatoes and tomato ragu
- Stacey's Trifle – Italian mascarpone pudding, fresh fruit and toasted pound cake topped with pine nut brittle
- Make-A-Wish Meal for Two – choice of an appetizer, flatbread or two side salads, two entrees and a dessert
- Beverly's Lemonade – peach puree, pomegranate and lemonade mixed and garnished with lemons
About Maggiano's Little Italy
Maggiano's Little Italy® specializes in Italian-American cuisine served in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Maggiano's menu features both classic and contemporary recipes – authentic pastas, signature salads, prime steaks, fresh seafood, regular chef specials and specialty desserts. Maggiano's 44 locations nationwide offer lunch and dinner, delivery, carryout service and banquet spaces for special occasions. Maggiano's is owned and operated by Brinker International, Inc. (NYSE: EAT), one of the world's leading casual dining restaurant companies, serving more than one million guests daily. Brinker owns or franchises more than 1,500 restaurants in 33 countries and two territories. In addition to Maggiano's, Brinker owns and operates Chili's® Grill & Bar.
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Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. According to a 2011 U.S. study of wish impact, most health professionals surveyed believe a wish-come-true can have positive impacts on the health of children. Kids say wishes give them renewed strength to fight their illnesses, and their parents say these experiences help strengthen the entire family. Based in Phoenix, Make-A-Wish is one of the world's leading children's charities, serving children in every community in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and more than 25,000 volunteers, Make-A-Wish grants a wish somewhere in the country every 38 minutes. It has granted more than 226,000 wishes since its inception in 1980; nearly 14,000 in 2012 alone. Visit Make-A-Wish at wish.org to learn more.
SOURCE Maggiano's Little Italy