SARASOTA, Fla. (Oct.1, 2019) — By way of special invitation from the Michael’s On East Co-Proprietor Michael Klauber, celebrity guests from South Africa will journey to Sarasota this October to host a series of events in partnership with Michael’s On East and Michael’s Wine Cellar. Londolozi Game Reserve Executive Chef Anna Ridgewell, CEO and Co-Founder of the Good Work Foundation Kate Groch, CEO and Co-Founder of Londolozi Game Reserve Dave Varty, and wildlife activist and author Boyd Varty will be traveling to Sarasota to share authentic South African cuisine, award-winning wine pairings and a cause serving education for children in rural areas of South Africa.
Held bi-annually in Sarasota since 2013, Safari Sarasota is a three-day, five event experience inspired by Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club travels to Londolozi Game Reserve and the passion to support digital learning in rural areas of South Africa. Michael and Terri Klauber first visited Londolozi in 2011, and they have been captivated by the wildlife and connected to the community ever since.
“South Africa has held a special place in our hearts since the moment we first arrived with our Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club clients back in 2005,” said Klauber. “This fall, we are also honored to welcome our friend Boyd Varty for a special intimate conversation in advance of the launch of his newest book, The Lion Tracker’s Guide to Life.”
Members of the public are invited to attend each of the five distinct Safari Sarasota events hosted by the visiting chef, as Groch will share the mission of the Good Work Foundation with guests. Safari Sarasota events benefit the All Heart Fund, which was created in honor of Leanna Knopik, a 16-year-old Sarasota native who passed away almost a year after visiting some of South Africa’s most remote communities. It had been Leanna’s dream to support children and education in South Africa and, the All Heart Fund through the Good Work Foundation is now providing education and digital literacy access to more than 7,000 South African school children per week.
“A Conversation with Boyd Varty”
10:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 24, 2019 at Ringling College Morganroth Auditorium
Gifted storyteller, life coach, wildlife expert, and literacy activist Boyd Varty will share lessons learned from the South African Bush in an engaging and educational presentation. Celebrating the release of his new book, “The Lion Tracker’s Guide to Life”, each guest will receive a copy. There is an optional lunch following this event, guests will enjoy a lively Q&A with Boyd and his father Dave Varty as Michael’s On East and Chef Anna Ridgewell presents one of Londolozi’s signature dishes. Tickets can be purchased online through www.safarisarasota.com or via phone at 941-366-0007, ext. 230. Advanced reservations are required and space is limited.
Safari Sarasota: An Interactive Cooking Dinner
6:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 24, 2019 in the Michael’s On East Ballroom
Londolozi Game Reserve Executive Chef Anna Ridgewell will be joined by Michael’s On East Executive Chef Jamil Pineda as they lead guests in preparing four courses at individual tables throughout the Michael’s On East Ballroom. Londolozi’s original Cape Malay recipes will be paired with top South African wines during this interactive cooking dinner. Tickets can be purchased online through www.safarisarasota.com or via phone at 941-366-0007, ext. 230. Advanced reservations are required and space is limited.
Safari Sarasota: Bush Wine Dinner
6:00 p.m. on Friday, October 25, 2019 at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
A magical evening awaits under the Banyan Trees at Selby Gardens as Londolozi Game Reserve Executive Chef Anna Ridgewell presents a traditional “bush dinner” perfectly paired with South African wines. The event coordinators aim to recreate dining events produced at Londolozi Game Reserve on safari “under the African sky.” Tickets can be purchased online through www.safarisarasota.com or via phone at 941-366-0007, ext. 230. Advanced reservations are required and space is limited.
South African Wine Tasting
2-4 p.m. on Saturday, October 26, 2019 at Michael’s Wine Cellar
A casual, walk-about tasting with prized wines from the Cape Winelands
will be the perfect finish to Safari Sarasota festivities. Individual tickets are $10 per person and advanced reservations are available through www.safarisarasota.com.
South African Wine Dinner
7:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 26, 2019 at Michael’s Wine Cellar
A collaborative wine tasting dinner in Michael’s Wine Cellar featuring the award-winning South African wines paired with an exclusive menu designed by Londolozi Game Reserve Executive Chef Anna Ridgewell. Individual tickets are $125 per person and advanced reservations are available through www.safarisarasota.com.
For reservations or to secure an event sponsorship, contact Gina Liga at Michael’s On East: 941-366-0007, ext. 230 or Gina.Liga@bestfood.com. Visit www.AllHeartFund.org for more information about the Good Work Foundation and the All Heart Fund.
About Good Work Foundation
Established in 2006, Good Work Foundation (GWF) is an internationally recognized nonprofit dedicated to reimagining education for rural communities in South Africa, from kindergarten to adult. It does this by focusing on digital learning opportunities for people living in rural communities. Good Work Foundation operates 5 campuses and reaches 7000 children and young adults every week. GWF is the 2018 Reimagine Education Gold Award winner for tech in education, and the Silver Award winner overall for the African continent. For more information about GWF, visit www.goodworkfoundation.org
About Michael’s On East
Michael’s On East was founded on April 27, 1987. The establishment received its 29th consecutive AAA Four-Diamond Award in 2019. Michael’s On East is a contemporary fine dining restaurant featuring an extraordinary supper club atmosphere, inspired cuisine, and an intimate piano bar. Michael’s On East Catering is Sarasota’s premiere caterer creating memorable events from candlelit dinners for two to dazzling galas for 1,000. Michael’s Wine Cellar hosts more than 1,000 International estate-bottled wines including more than 200 wines under $20, boutique spirits and craft beers. For more information, call 941-366-0007 or visit www.bestfood.com.