By Thomas Shamma
---- — You can attend your fund-raiser and eat it, too, at the 16th annual Fabulous Feast Gala this week.
The Wyndham Andover Hotel hosts the event Wednesday, April 30, featuring a varied selection of food, cocktails, a raffle and a silent auction. At the gala, the Kiwanis Club of Greater Lawrence will honor the achievements of local citizens while raising funds for the children of Greater Lawrence.
"Lenzi's Catering brings what they call a barbecue train; it's an actual train," said Dave Wilson, who has been helping to coordinate this event for all 16 years.
The event opens at 5:30 p.m. with cocktails, a raffle and a silent auction. After 6:30, the Kiwanis Club will honor two citizens: Brother Rene Roy and Enzo S. Fossella.
Roy is being presented with the Humanitarian of the Year award. He served as a missionary in Rwanda from 1995 to 1999 and on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. He's currently a campus minister at Central Catholic High School in Lawrence, where in the past he has served both as principal and as president.
Fossella is being presented with the Gladys and Tony Sakowich Lifetime Achievement Award. He founded the Service Club of Andover and has been raising money for the Merrimack Valley YMCA for decades. Gladys and Tony Sakowich have a long history of philanthropy in the Greater Lawrence area.
The live auction will take place after 6:30 p.m., as well as the main event -- the food. The number of local restaurants participating in the feast has reached 24 and may be higher by April 30. Some of the options include mini kabobs from Chefs of the Old World Catering, reuben sliders from the Claddagh Restaurant, tikki chaat vegetarian from Ragini Indinan Bistro, and, on the above-mentioned train, Lenzi's famous grilled barbecue ribs.
"Three Dogz Diner, I think, are one of our longer [participants]," Wilson said. "They've been coming for years."
They're providing salad, homemade chips and salsa, and quiche.
"We've had a great turnout of people (in past years)," said Charlie Breen, president of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Lawrence. "(We've) raised a lot of money for children. It goes to a good cause."
He outlined some of the programs that the Kiwanis Club maintains, which include a Student of the Month award for elementary school students in the Greater Lawrence area, a citizenship award for high school students who demonstrate academic achievement and a commitment to community service, Key Clubs at multiple high schools, and more.
If You Go
What: The 16th annual Fabulous Feast.
When: Wednesday, April 30 5:30 to 9 p.m.
Where: The Wyndham Andover Hotel, 123 Old River Road, Andover.
How: $50 per person or $400 for a 10-person table, at www.lawrencekiwanisclub.com.