Every Columbus Day since 1996, Ilio DiPaolo’s Restaurant & Banquet Facility hosts the Celebrity Chef Culinary Extravaganza to benefit their scholarship fund. This year’s sold-out event on Monday, Oct. 14 is headlined by Chef Jordan Andino, host of “Late Night Eats” on the Cooking Channel and Food Network’s “Food Boats,” who’s also appeared on popular shows including “Chopped,” “Rachel Ray,” “Beat Bobby Flay” and “Kourtney and Khloe Take the Hamptons.”
Putting his unique Filipino/Italian spin on dishes like pork belly adobo and red snapper ceviche, Andino is planning an extraordinary eight-course meal alongside Chef Dan Buckley, Dr. Andy Cappuccino, Chef Michael DiPaolo and the Ilio’s kitchen staff. The menu will be paired with fine wines that take people on a tour from Northern to Southern Italy.
“It’s always a great evening of fun, food and camaraderie,” said Dennis DiPaolo, owner of Ilio DiPaolo’s.
Headed up by his brother, Chef Michael DiPaolo, the Celebrity Chef Culinary Extravaganza is the biggest annual fundraiser for the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Fund, which was established after the passing of Ilio DiPaolo in 1995.
“Right after my father died, Jim Kelly, Bud Carpenter and others from the Buffalo Bills came to the house and said, ‘We’re going to help you carry on your father’s name,’” recalled Dennis DiPaolo. “They passed a helmet around the locker room that week and raised $10,000 on the spot.”
The Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Fund, of which Bud Carpenter still serves as president, has since gone on to give over a million dollars back to the community Ilio chose to settle and raise a family in after traveling across the country and globe as a professional wrestler.
“This is the community he fell in love with,” added Dennis DiPaolo. “My father wanted to reward not only hardworking athletes, but also help the less fortunate in the area.”
Split equally between sports scholarships and local charities, recipients of the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Fund have included the Center for Handicapped Children, People Inc., sasi and John R. Oishei Children's Hospital.
To learn more about the Ilio DiPaolo Scholarship Fund, click here.