Archive for the ‘Benefit’ Category

Stanford Mobile Blood Drive @ Whole Foods Market

Today at 11:00 AM ~ 4:00 PM

Whole Foods Market Blossom Hill
Stanford Mobile Blood Drive
1146 Blossom Hill Road
1 (408) 266-3700

Read why we should give today August 18, 2012

Jazz Fusion Ecstasy for charity this weekend

We’ve previously mentioned Pandit Habib Khan, the local master of Indian classical music and Indo-Jazz fusion. This weekend, Khan will give a concert of jazz fusion music under the title “Ecstasy”, to benefit Asha for Education Silicon Valley. Pandit Habib Khan’s fusion music blends classical Indian sitar with western instruments and jazz rhythms.

Asha for Education Silicon Valley is one of about 60 chapters of a charity supporting education for poor children in India. Asha for Education Silicon Valley supports more than 40 projects in India. For example, they support Rescue Junction, which helps homeless children living in the railway station at Gaya, Bihar, to get a basic education, vocational training, counseling, and legal assistance. Other projects provide education to mentally handicapped children in four cities around India. Asha for Education has a four-star rating for financial efficiency from Charity Navigator, and its all-volunteer staff is working to upgrade its accountability processes to reach a four-star overall rating.

This event promises a chance to hear some beautiful music and support a great cause.

  • What: Indo-Jazz fusion concert with Pandit Habib Khan and Matthew Montfort
  • When: Saturday, Nov 5th 2011, 6PM
  • Where: Spangenberg Theatre, 780 Arastradero Road, Palo Alto, CA 94306
  • How Much: $25 to $75 per person, benefitting Asha for Education Silicon Valley

Japantown ~ Island Summer Jam

Island Summer Jam – a benefit event for the Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital. 100% of the ticket sales will benefit LPCH.

This is an “ALCOHOL FREE” event.

Saturday, August 20th, 2011
10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Akiyama Wellness Center
110 Jackson Street, between 3rd and 4th
San Jose, CA

Event Information: Hawaiian Island Entertainment

Tickets available at these fine locations:

$20. – Adults
$15. Kids & Seniors

***Island Sol Company, 225 Jackson Street
San Jose, CA 408.998.8600

***Phil’s Treasure Pot, 625 Oak Grove Ave #B
Menlo Park, CA 650.561.4296

***Aloha Kitchen Hawaiian BBQ, 1041 E. Capitol Expwy, Ste.30
San Jose, CA 408.360.8899

***L&L Hawaiian BBQ, 1380 W. Campbell Ave
Campbell, CA 408.866.0982

***L&L Hawaiian BBQ, 273 W. Calaveras Blvd
Milpitas, CA 408.262.5880

***L&L Hawaiian BBQ, 1 Curtner Ave
San Jose, CA 408.288.9839

***L&L Hawaiian BBQ, 27328 Hesperian Blvd.,
Hayward CA 510.782.0880

***L&L Hawaiian BBQ, 3580 Homestead Rd.,
Santa Clara, CA 408.246.0896

Island Summer Jam ~ facebook

California Billiard Club: Gregory 9-Ball Open

I have had the opportunity to watch Jeff Gregory in action at California Billiard Club. Jeff is highly respected by his fellow pool players, and makes One Pocket and 9-Ball look effortless.

Jeff has recently undergone open heart surgery. He is now recovering, but he could use help with his medical bills.

Chris Swart, owner California Billiard Club, is hosting a 9-Ball tournament this weekend. $10 of each entry fee will go to the Jeff Gregory Heart Surgery Fund. Also, California Billiard Club will donate $5 for every entry received.

Even if you do not enter the tournament, come out – watch some expert pool and show your support with a donation.

If you can’t make it call California Billiard Club ask for Chris Swart for donation information.

California Billiard Club (on facebook)

August 20th and 21st, 2011
The tournament: Doors open at 11Am – Play Starts at Noon
881 E. El Camino Real, Mountain View, CA
Telephone: (650) 965-3100

An impressive production of CHICAGO brings a perfect commentary on current times

Shannon Self seeks fame as chorine Roxie Hart, Michael Mulcahy charms as slick lawyer Billy Flynn and Mary Kalita struts as vaudevillian Velma Kelly. Photo: Chris Ayers

The famous musical Chicago might be even more relevant today than when it was first produced on stage decades ago.  These days we move smoothly from Britney’s craziness to Tiger’s shenanigans to Lindsay’s legal woes to Charlie’s “winning”…  and no one really cares what these people have done, we just shell out our hard earned cash to hear stories of tiger blood and porn stars.  Until the next train wreck hits.  As the show says, “What the hell does innocence got to do with it?”

Marquee Productions presentation of Chicago, now playing at the Montgomery Theater in San Jose, is definitely not a train wreck, and still perfectly mirrors our current fascination with celebrity.  I can remember attending at least eight different live performances of Chicago in my life, plus the film, and it is still one of my very favorite shows.  Of course, it’s hard to mess up a show that revolves around sex and murder, with a stage full of scantily clad women and men thrusting and grinding to the Fosse style choreography.  This particular production, put on by Marquee Productions as a benefit for the Children’s Musical Theater, is not only a decidedly adult show that entertains on every level, but it really showcases the talents of the performers who have graduated from our own CMT.

Assistant Choreographer Kikau Alvaro strikes an iconic pose. Photo: Chris Ayers

Michael Mulcahy, who started with CMT forty years ago, is absolutely the star of this production as Billy Flynn.  He has an excellent stage presence and voice, and just the right touch of sinister smarminess.  He is possibly the best Billy Flynn I’ve ever seen.  Mary Kalita and Shannon Self also shine as Velma and Roxie, respectively, and I felt they presented a more realistic version of their characters than I have seen before.  In previous productions it always seemed that Velma was the established Vaudeville star, with Roxie the upstart newcomer. In this production they are presented on more equal footing, realizing – as in real life – that “established” means nothing, it’s all about the press of the day.  That is exactly what this show is about, so I’m very impressed to see this slightly new feel with Velma and Roxie.

At first I felt that Amos, played by Michael Johnson, was a little weak, but then he presented “Mr. Cellophane”.  His character came strongly to life with this song, as it should, and his excellent talents in this scene really emphasized the purpose with which he underplayed the role in the first act.  He was fantastic.  Also fantastic was D. Jaques, who played Mary Sunshine to transvestite perfection.  Kudos to Marquee Productions for including the cross dressed character and really not shying away from any of the adult themes.

Breana Taylor vamps as Annie. Photo: Chris Ayers

Kudos also go to the rest of the cast including the cell block and male dancers.  I could hardly take my eyes off Cynthia Pariente and Sarah Marino of the sexy cell block, and my guest was quite impressed with Breana Taylor.  But we were both impressed and quite enjoyed the entire cast of male dancers as well.  Although they were mostly chorus dancers, they were quite amazing and helped round out this production to the highest enjoyment level.

A huge thank you to director/choreographer Kevin R. Hauge for putting on this thoroughly entertaining show.  It was one of the most fun nights I’ve had in theater in recent memory.

All tickets are $30, and the small Montgomery Theater makes every seat a good one.  The show is a benefit for our local Children’s Musical Theater, and this production of adult performers shows what excellent training comes through the CMT. There are baskets at the exit doors for donations as well, and my guest and I dug into our purses to find every last scrap of cash we had.  It is definitely a worthwhile cause.



A Marquee Production


Through April 23
Montgomery Theater
271 S. Market Street, San Jose
Tickets available at or call 408-792-4111
Use promo code LUVIT for $5 off each ticket


Many a mickle makes a muckle

The numbers are starting to come in on the Bakesale for Japan effort. The national organizer announced that bakesales across the country raised over $120,000 to benefit Peace Winds Japan. Locally, the San Jose bakesale netted nearly $9,000.

The other activities at Roy’s station last weekend were equally impressive. The kanikapila (ukulele jam session) and raffle brought in about $4,000 for the Red Cross, and Roy’s owners and staff contributed over $2,300 to relief efforts.

Very impressive that a few cupcakes, cookies, coffees and raffle tickets can add up to so much!

Tonight – Pizza My Heart Fundraiser for Bryan Stow.

Today, April 5th, Pizza My Heart is having a fundraiser for Bryan Stow. Bryan is a regular customer of Pizza My Heart in San Jose and he is a local EMT. Bryan was attacked at Dodger stadium last Thursday and remains in a coma. Mention him any time today, while placing your order, at any location and they will donate 30% to his family.
Bryan Stow on facebook

Ghetto Music to benefit Horace Mann School

Eddie Gale Poster

If you’ve had enough film at Cinequest to last you through the week (or the month), consider the alternatives on Friday night this week.

One option is a special concert by San Jose’s “ambassador of jazz” Eddie Gale. Longtime San Jose resident Gale is an established master of free jazz trumpet, best known for his work with Sun Ra. On Friday he’ll present the “remake and beyond” of his 1968 album Ghetto Music. The album is described as “an oral history through song and dance of inner city experiences during the 1960’s Civil Rights Movement”, and it combines jazz, street music, and folk rhythms.

Proceeds from ticket sales will support Horace Mann fifth graders attending Science Camp. More details are available at ARTSopolis and on YouTube. Tickets are being sold by Brown Paper Tickets.

I’m looking forward to this opportunity to see a jazz master in a small theater, and benefit a good cause.

  • What: Benefit concert featuring Eddie Gale
  • Where: Le Petit Trianon, 72 N Fifth St, San Jose
  • When: Friday, March 11; 6 pm
  • How much: $35 per person, benefiting Horace Mann School 5th graders

700 Turkeys for the Needy

Yesterday, my husband John and I were at Britannia Arms pub (5027 Almaden Expressway, San Jose CA) with a crowd of other wet volunteers helping with their 8th annual “Brit Turkey Drive”.* Michael North and John McKay and pub regulars collected enough donations to buy 700 Thanksgiving turkeys to distribute to the hungry of our community. The turkeys and other food will be given out through the programs of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral and Santa Maria Urban Ministry (SMUM) of San Jose. Dignitaries helping with yesterday’s delivery and distribution included The Very Reverend David Bird (Dean of the Cathedral), San Jose Vice Mayor Judy Chirco, and SMUM’s Executive Director, Rev. Lawrence Robles. Channel 7 ABC news was there to film the story.

There were several dozen individual turkeys waiting in the freezer of the Britannia Arms but the morning’s drama was provided by the arrival of four large pallets of frozen birds emerging one by one from the frosty mist of a large delivery truck. Within minutes of the last touchdown on the parking asphalt, individual turkeys and boxes of turkeys were passed from arm to arm into the backs of cars and trucks driven by volunteers to the programs waiting to distribute them. Three cheers for the generosity of the Britannia Arms!

The Channel 7 cameraman said that they might be back to film SMUM serving a full turkey dinner to 200 homeless people under one of San Jose’s bridges – later this month.

* “The Brit Almaden is your authentic neighborhood San Jose British Pub, restaurant, live music venue and Sports bar.”

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Images Copyright 2010 by Katy Dickinson and John Plocher

Take the $4.50 challenge for Hunger Action Week

$4.50 is the daily food budget of the average food stamps recipient.

September 20 through 25 is Hunger Action Week, and United Way of Silicon Valley is challenging you to eat on a food stamps budget. The average Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP, or “food stamps”) recipient, which includes nearly 40 million Americans, is budgeted $4.50 per day for food. The $4.50 per day challenge is meant to raise awareness of the difficulty of subsisting on such a small budget, and encourage us to donate or volunteer with programs that provide food for the needy. In addition to the $4.50 Challenge, United Way is suggesting 4 more ways to take action against hunger, to make 5 ways in 5 days.

Even if you’re reading this on Monday, it’s not too late to take the challenge. You can sign up for anywhere between 1 and 5 days. Visit the registration page to sign up. You can also get some suggestions for how to keep on budget from the getting started guide. I’m taking the challenge, and I’ll let you know how it goes here on San Jose Metblogs.

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