Jacques Torres to host March of Dimes event at chocolate factory
Chef Jacques Torres, the world-famous chocolatier, revealed a little-known fact about himself when he recently announced that he will host a special event next month to raise money for the new Brooklyn chapter of the March of Dimes.
Jacques revealed that he was born prematurely. He also recently became a new father to a premature baby.
The renowned pastry chef is teaming up with the March of Dimes to hold a fundraiser called Light BKLYN Purple on Nov. 17 at his chocolate factory at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. Purple is the color of the March of Dimes.
Nov. 17 also marks the Sixth Annual World Prematurity Day. On that day, organizations around the world will join with the March of Dimes to hold special events to honor the courage of parents of premature babies.
One in 10 infants is born premature in the U.S. each year, according to the March of Dimes. Worldwide, an estimated 15 million babies are born too soon and nearly 1 million of them die due to complications of preterm birth.
The Brooklyn Army Terminal fundraiser is the inaugural event of the newly established March of Dimes Greater New York Brooklyn Committee, a group organized to raise awareness and funds in Kings County. The committee is headed by Bay Ridge resident John Quaglione.
Torres will welcome guests for a one-of-a-kind tour of his chocolate factory — an experience that is generally reserved for chefs and culinary students. He will be preparing hors d’oeuvres and presenting a dessert table that will feature a variety of his famous chocolates and cookies.
“I am proud to host this fundraiser in my chocolate factory with the March of Dimes as this event is close to my heart; my son and I were both born preterm,” Torres said in a statement. “I look forward to going purple on the 17th to raise awareness of the worldwide crisis of preterm birth.”
Quaglione, whose 5-year-old daughter Natalie Grace was a premature baby, said the March of Dimes is “grateful to the support and partnership with Jacques Torres” and that the organization is looking forward to the event next month.
“With Brooklyn booming with families, it is so important that the March of Dimes expands our outreach within Kings County so that we further our mission so that more and more babies are born healthy every year,” Quaglione said.
Founded in 1938, the March of Dimes is an organization that fights for measures to prevent premature births and improve health care for mothers and children.
People from all over the world will be “going purple,” not just on World Prematurity Day, but throughout the month of November. Last year, nearly 100 countries participated with building and landmark lightings which included the Empire State Building. This year in Brooklyn, the Barclays Center, Brooklyn Borough Hall and the Parachute Jump at Luna Park in Coney Island will light purple for World Prematurity Day.
For more information on the Nov. 17 fundraiser, visit www.marchofdimes.org/events/nycbklyn.
Among the prizes to be won at the event will be a large chocolate turkey, just in time for Thanksgiving, to be donated by Torres.
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