Very Special Dinner in the Dark for "Mom" Ferguson

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Perhaps you’ve heard of Dinner in the Dark, a monthly dinner series where all of the proceeds go to a local charity selected by the host restaurant. Diners are “in the dark” because they aren't informed about the participating chefs or culinary offerings beforehand.

On March 3rd, Tri-C Hospitality Management will host a special Dinner in the Dark in support of chef Heather Haviland’s (Lucky’s Café) mother, Mary Lou Ferguson. Ferguson (pictured) is suffering from Alzheimer’s and her family now faces the cost of care and assisted living. The dinner will feature 20 local chefs from restaurants such as Fahrenheit, Momocho and Spice, serving tasting portions.

This is the second fundraiser organized by Ky-wai Wong, former Lucky’s chef, who now teaches culinary arts at Tri-C. Wong’s January 30th dinner was a sellout. Scene sat down with Wong to discuss this larger event.

Why is this dinner important to you?

I worked with Heather, her sister Rebecca and mom when it was only the four of us working the line. We worked very hard and Mom was not only our dishwasher but our moral booster, therapist and doctor. Doing this dinner comes from a place of love and respect for Mom and the Haviland Family.

Will your Tri-C students be involved?

The response from Tri-C’s Hospitality Program has been HUGE. Students will be helping in all aspects. Some will be paired with chefs to help them prep and execute during the event.

How were you able to coordinate such a strong response from local chefs?

All of the chefs are friends of Heather. When I reached out to them, they were honored to be asked and so happy to do this for a friend they love.

What are you most looking forward to at the event?

The camaraderie among the participating chefs. All of the chefs know each other and it’s very rare to have a moment that brings them all together like this.

What's the parking situation?

Complimentary valet parking will be provided. The biggest challenge we have doing events at the Management Center is parking, because we are located on Euclid Avenue. When people know there is valet parking, we always get a better response.

* Tickets are $75.05 with all proceeds, after costs, benefitting the Alzheimer's Association, Cleveland Chapter. All other proceeds from the evening’s fundraising will go to Ferguson. More information is available at

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