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A Matter of Taste 2014

Annual Event Draws Largest Crowd Ever

A Matter of Taste: A Delicious and Lively Evening

Arc of Westchester Foundation’s Annual Food and Wine Event Draws Largest Crowd Ever


HAWTHORNE, N.Y., October 23, 2014 –The Arc of Westchester Foundation hosted its annual food and wine event at Westchester Country Club in Rye on October 21st. Nearly 400 attendees dined on delicious foods from local restaurants, sipped a wide array of prestigious wines and beers, and participated in live and silent auctions.

“We are thrilled to have had such a large and supportive crowd this year,” said Nancy Patota, Executive Director, The Arc of Westchester Foundation. “The food was spectacular, the wines and beers were exceptional, and the variety and caliber of the auction items were outstanding. Everyone had a wonderful evening and best of all we were able to raise over $260,000 in support of our comprehensive and innovative programs and services for people of all ages with developmental disabilities, including autism.”

Nearly 30 food and beverage participants served attendees their top culinary fare, such as brisket torte and homemade four-cheese ravioli from North Street Tavern in White Plains, polenta ripiena al formaggio and penne carrettiera from Toscana in Eastchester, braised veal ragu with porcini mushrooms and smashed sweet potatoes from An American Bistro in Tuckahoe and delicious fish tacos from Eastchester Fish Gourmet. Other restaurants participating in the evening were: Abigail Kirsch, Caperberry Events at The C.V. Rich Mansion, Catering Relationships, Chef Johnson's, Artuso and Sons Bakery and Café, Cathy's Biscotti, Culinary Tech Center, Chocolations, Johnny Gelato, LuLu Cake Boutique, Sam's of Gedney Way, Texas de Brazil, The 808 Bistro, The Great American Barbeque Co., Sweet Sam's Baking Co.. Tramonto, Westchester Country Club and Rye Road House.

Beverage participants included: Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits, Path Coffee Roasters and Yonkers Brewery.  

Some of the evening’s biggest buzz surrounded the auction items. This year, A Matter of Taste’s silent auction offered some notable prizes, such as the opportunity to be a News12 Weatherman for a Day, attend “Late Night with Seth Meyers”, an amazing collection of baseballs autographed by Yankees through the decades, and a diamond and white gold necklace.

The live auction overflowed with attendees and garnered a lot of excitement from participants. Some of the biggest draws, which resulted in lively back-and-forth bidding, were a private sunset cruise on the Long Island Sound for fifteen people, a wine tasting and four-course meal for ten at Sam’s of Gedney Way, tickets to see a Yankees game in the Legends Suite, sailboat racing around Oyster Bay,  and the opportunity to drive exotic vehicles such as Ferraris and Lamborghinis on open roads.

In addition to the food, beverages, auctions, and the always popular wine pull, the Arc of Westchester recognized individuals that have made a significant impact. Longtime Westchester resident Larry McNaughton and local youth organization Origami Wish received the Lifetime Achievement Award and Youth Partner Award, respectively.

Larry often speaks about every life being precious and every person deserving a fair chance. When accepting his award, Larry McNaughton, immediate past Foundation Board president and current foundation board member, was humbled, saying that he felt as though he should not be honored for doing something he should be doing.   “If you see a need, you show up. And if you have any means at all, you give,” said Larry.

The founders of Origami Wish,  Andrew Keito Kihara, Kohro Shimizu, Athena Moay Kihara, and Mio Shimizu, a group of students who create and sell origami cranes to bring hope and help make wishes come true, spoke about how honored they were to receive their award. The students first became involved with The Arc of Westchester in 2011 when they fund-raised for the victims of the Great Tohoku Earthquake in Japan by selling origami cranes. Through this fundraiser, the students met many generous and kind people at Arc who helped them donate new books for the Tohuku library.  They now donate the proceeds from their sales to The Arc of Westchester.

“If you fold paper into cranes, your wish will come true,” said Andrew Keito Kihara. “We sell our cranes, donating the proceeds to The Arc of Westchester, in the hopes that the buyers’ wishes also come true.”


About Arc of Westchester

Arc of Westchester is the oldest and largest agency in the county serving children, teens and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including individuals on the autism spectrum, and their families. Over 800 employees provide more than 2,000 individuals throughout the county with a broad range of innovative and effective programs and services designed to foster independence, productivity and participation in community life.

Our mission is to empower children, teens and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including individuals on the autism spectrum, to achieve their potential by strengthening families and encouraging personal choices, abilities and interests. Our vision is a world in which children, teens and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities including individuals on the autism spectrum enjoy fulfilled lives and an inspired future.

Arc of Westchester is a chapter of NYSARC, Inc. and The Arc.



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Editor’s Note: The Arc is not an acronym; always refer to us as Arc of Westchester, not The ARC and never ARC. The Arc should be considered as a title or a phrase.


CONTACT:     Regina Moore, Arc of Westchester, [email protected], 914-495-4573