NORWALK, Conn. Norwalk restaurants are coming together to support the Norwalk Reads gala Thursday night at Stepping Stones Museum for Children on West Avenue.
Red Lulu Mexican, Burger Bar & Bistro and Coromandel Indian Bistro are pitching in food and drinks for the gala, which supports the donation of books to children in partnership with the Norwalk Public Library.
The gala starts at 6 p.m. Guests can bid on a chance to win a sleepover at the Museum of Natural History, "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" tickets and use of a Mercedes for a weekend.
Guests can also enjoy contemporary Mexican dishes, eclectic Indian cuisine and traditional American fare. Norwalk restaurant managers saw a connection between supporting a family organization such as Norwalk Reads and promoting family values at their own institutions.
The restaurant donations are integral to running the gala every year, said Shari Kaufman, who helps run the gala. "The economy is tough right now, and these restaurants should be commended for their generosity and commitment to the community," Kaufman said.
Catalina Ramirez, head of sales and events at Red Lulu, said that by providing fresh guacamole, sweet corn bread and margaritas to the gala, her restaurant is showing its family-friendly side while getting the attention of parents. She also pointed out the importance of parents' active involvement in their kids' lives. "Family that eats together stays together," Ramirez said.
Coromandel will provide their popular cauliflower appetizer, called lasuni gobi, and an assortment of naan, or Indian stuffed bread. "Primarily, it's the cause that propels me to be a part of the an event like Norwalk Reads," said Gopi Nair, managing partner of Coromandel Group. "I personally am a big advocate of education, and I understand the need of the same."
Burger Bar & Bistro at 60 N. Main St. will showcase two favorite dishes: the lobster mac and cheese and truffle mac and cheese. General manager Jamie Doyle said Burger Bar believes in giving back to the community.
"We consistently look to help where ever we can," he said. "We believe children having the ability and opportunity to read is vital to a solid development and that is why we are happy to participate in this charity event each year."