Do-Good Dining

Feb 25, 2010

The Parkway Grill is one of the 30 Dinners from the Heart participants.

Do you want to do good by dining out?  On Wednesday night, March 3, more than 30 restaurants, mostly in Pasadena (as well as Joachim Splichal’s three Downtown restaurants), will particpate in Dinners from the Heart. Proceeds go to Hathaway-Sycamores, a venerable family-services agency headquartered in Pasadena. Now in its 19th year, Dinners from the Heart sells individual tickets for complete dinners; prices range from  $50 (El Cholo, Green Street Restaurant, Mijares) to $150 (Arroyo Chop House, Patina, Maison Akira). Wine is included with every meal, but beyond that, there as many ways to “do” Dinners from the Heart as there are participating restaurants; all you have to do is make a reservation for March 3 at the phone number listed below.

At some places, there’s a set menu; at others, you can order anything. Big groups – friends, office mates – coordinate their reservations and get a big table; other people go as singles, couples or foursomes. You can dine at an old favorite (find participants at or go to a place you’ve been meaning to try (on my list: Café 140). Wherever you go, you’ll be benefiting an organization that’s been serving local children and families for more than a century.

“What’s fun,” says board member Elizabeth Hoxworth, “is that the restaurants are very generous, and the staff is really solicitous when you walk in with your Hathaway-Sycamores reservation.” What’s also fun is to watch the YouTube pitch; the creativity and energy of the staffers at the agency is infectious. They’re helping more than 11,000 children and families annually  with everything from comprehensive residential care to tutoring sessions. The stated goal of Hathaway-Sycamores, which was founded as Pasadena’s first orphanage back in 1902, is, “To provide services that result in outcomes sooner that last longer.” And you can help by enjoying a tax-deductible, school-night dinner out!

Dinners from the Heart for Hathaway-Sycamores
Wednesday, March 3
Various restaurants in Pasadena and Greater L.A.
Information and reservations 626.685.2124,

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