Advocates fundraiser finds new home |

Advocates fundraiser finds new home

Alexis DeLaCruz

— Diane Moore couldn’t think of a more stunning place to host the 22nd annual Decadent Dessert fundraiser benefiting Advocates Against Battering and Abuse.

Sunday’s event, which features desserts, drinks, live music and live and silent auctions, is from 6 to 9 p.m. at Marabou, west of Steamboat Springs.

“Our guests are really going to enjoy the drive out and the incredible beauty surrounding them as they enjoy their glass of wine and dessert,” Moore said Wednesday.

Moore, the executive director of Advocates, said the event is the organization’s largest fundraiser of the year. Advocates is a nonprofit agency that assists victims of domestic violence, sex assault and other crimes.

“It’s pretty important because it provides us the monies we need for matching state and federal funds, and to implement all the other outreach programs we do,” she said.

The event raised about $16,000 last year.

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In addition to raising money for Advocates, the event allows local chefs to display their creations. There are 22 chefs who will provide a variety of desserts for this year’s fundraiser, Moore said.

An added bonus for the chefs is competing for the highly coveted People’s Choice and Presentation awards.

Lisa Ciraldo-Freese, owner of Chocolate Soup, won the People’s Choice award in 2006.

“Winning an award is just an added benefit,” she said. “I like being involved because it is a great event benefiting a great cause.”

Ciraldo-Freese said local pastry chefs don’t get many opportunities to display their work.

“It’s fun for the pastry chefs in town to show off their talents,” she said.

Chocolate Soup employees will take three desserts to the table this year, but Ciraldo-Freese wouldn’t divulge any details.

“We’re just going to try to have some fun with our theme and raise some money for a great cause,” she said.

Moore said she always looks forward to the variety and creativity in the desserts.

“It runs the gamut,” she said.

Local musician Steve Boyn-ton will perform. Live auction items include a season ski pass, a half-day of skiing with Olympic medalist Todd Lodwick, Colorado Avalanche tickets and a private meal for four catered by a chef. There are more than 75 silent auction items, Moore said.

“We’re very excited to build our new venue,” she said. “It’s going to be a beautiful, classy evening.”

– To contact Alexis DeLaCruz, call 871-4234 or e-mail