Destin Mac & Cheese festival raises $65,000 in donations

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DESTIN, Fla. (WKRG) — Nearly 1,500 people at Destin Commons Sunday had one thing in common, a craving for mac and cheese.

The Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast (B&GC) said the fourth annual Mac & Cheese Fest broke records for donations and attendance.

Shervin Rassa, general manager of B&GC of the Emerald Coast, said tickets for the event sold out the day before. This was the first year they didn’t sell tickets at the door.

The event raised a total of $65,000 to go directly to the B&GC. Rassa says the money will help them serve children’s clubs in four area counties. In 2021, the event raised $45,000.

“It really helps us impact the lives of young children in three priority outcome areas,” Rassa said. “School achievement, healthy lifestyles, good character and citizenship. This allows us to continue to provide positive development to the young people we serve.

12 kitchen teams boiled batches and batches of noodles near the communal fountain for people to try. Participants had tokens to vote for their favorite categories.

WINNERS:

  • KIDS’ CHOICE: Diciland Chicken
  • PEOPLE’S CHOICE: BBQ Smoke N’ Whiskey
  • JUDGES’ CHOICE: Jackacuda’s Seafood and Sushi

Two Youth Representatives of the Year were also nominated and awarded laptops and college scholarships after the jury was called.

Learn more about B&GC of the Emerald Coast:

The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast originated in 1968 as the Boys Club of the Playground Area with 15 members. When economic conditions threatened the organization in 1988, local businessmen recognized the value and potential of the Club and ensured that it survived.

In 1990, we excitedly jumped the gender gap and welcomed girls to the new Boys & Girls Club of Okaloosa County. Our focus expanded again to include education, and we began operating smart hubs at local colleges shortly thereafter.

Currently, over 1,200 children are enrolled during the school year and over 1,300 took advantage of Boys and Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast last summer.

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast is an IRS 501(c)3 registered charity that receives funds from contributions, special events, grants and major donors such as the Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation and United Agencies Way in Escambia and Okaloosa/Walton counties.

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