Monday, Feb. 24, 2014 | 5:01 p.m.
“Iron Chef America” winner Kerry Simon wrapped up his second round of stem-cell transplants Sunday at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and returns here today to put the final touches on his Fight MSA fundraiser Thursday at our downtown Keep Memory Alive event center at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.
Chef Kerry is courageously battling Multiple System Atrophy, for which there is no treatment or cure. My colleague John Katsilometes’ story of Kerry’s bravery was posted early Sunday.
Kerry’s business partner Elizabeth Blau told me: “Kerry is in great spirits and wanted to express his most sincere gratitude to everyone who has worked so hard on putting together the event. He is incredibly excited. We are four days out from our event, and Kerry thanks everyone for the herculean efforts that have gone into putting it together in such a short period of time.
“We still have some tickets to sell for the last-minute push. We are getting a large number of requests for comped tickets from celebrities, people who have donated auction items, the media, and the list goes on. We are extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed even in the smallest of ways, but there are no comp tickets to this event.
“There is no Kerry Simon guest list! Everyone on this committee has expended the greatest efforts and bought their own tickets to keep operational costs as low as possible and secured hundreds of auction items to make sure every dollar raised goes to effectively Fight MSA.”
Oscar-nominated actor Bill Murray, a close friend of Kerry’s, will MC the buffet party with star chefs Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Daniel Boulud, Michael Mina, Rick Moonen, Charlie Palmer, Barry Dakake and in concert Sammy Hagar, Vince Neil, Slash, Todd Rundgren, Alice Cooper, Lisa Loeb and System of a Down’s John Dolmayan.
I’ll work with auctioneer Christian Kohlberg to sell some incredible donated packages: Julian Serrano, Mario Batali and Todd English have offered to cater private dinner parties; artist Peter Max will paint your portrait; and there’s a seven-night trip to India’s palaces.
Mayor Carolyn Goodman and her husband, former Mayor Oscar Goodman, will attend to welcome Kerry home. As of this morning, nearly 300 tickets at $1,000 each have been sold, and the target is 400 by Thursday’s event. Please go to KeepMemoryAlive.org for tickets and additional information.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
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