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Story by Lindsey Chester, photos by Brooke Meyer.
Triangle Family Servies has been helping needy families in the area for more than 75 years. The Gingerbread Benefit is the organization’s premier fundraising event.
Top local chefs created exquisite, themed gingerbread houses that were displayed in the ball room of the Umstead Hotel. The gingerbread houses, along with other items, were auctioned off during the evening’s festivities. In addition, a silent auction showcased a variety of items from local businesses, including jewelry, vacation packages and sports memorabilia.
Guests enjoyed holiday music, wine and beer, desserts and savory delicacies prepared by the Umstead’s top chefs. All proceeds benefit the program services of Triangle Family Services, which deal with issues of financial stability, family safety and mental health services in the community.
The event raised $90,039 and over 300 people were in attendance. In conjunction with the auction, the Umstead held a special Children’s Tea with Santa. Kids met with the bearded guy and created confections of their own design.
The chefs create these works of food art, in a friendly competition, but there are no losers. Everything helps to raise the needed funds. This year there were 23 entries from chefs and restaurants all over the Triangle.
For 75 years, Triangle Family Services has been battling critical issues in our community for the most vulnerable families. Its mission, “Building a stronger community by strengthening the family,” is fulfilled by providing programs in three key areas: financial stability, family safety and mental health services. Last year alone, Triangle Family Services served more than 75,000 Triangle area residents with 93 percent living below the poverty level.