Restaurant Gala Honors Atlantic City Mayor and ‘Food Network Star’ Finalist

Gala honoreesThe Atlantic Cape Community College Restaurant Gala will mark its 32nd annual event by honoring Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian and Food Network Star finalist Nicole Gaffney, at the March 26 event at Bally’s Atlantic City.

Mayor Don Guardian, Atlantic City’s newly elected mayor, will be honored for his over two decades of leadership as executive director of the Special Improvement District, his community participation and activism, as well as his vision for Atlantic City. Mayor Guardian proves to be a business citizen who’s interested in ensuring a vibrant community for all.

Nicole Gaffney, of Brigantine, is a chef, writer and television personality best known for being a finalist on the 10th season of the reality cooking competition, “Food Network Star.” On the show, Nicole brought attention to her coastal cuisine, cooking up dishes that boast bright, clean flavors, using fresh ingredients and simple preparations. Gaffney will prepare a signature dish for the March 26 Restaurant Gala.

The Restaurant Gala is South Jersey’s premier fundraising event and dining extravaganza. With the theme “Under the Sea,” the 2015 Gala will feature beautiful, oceanic décor alongside a decadent feast.

The annual event celebrates food with hors d’oeuvres prepared by students at the Academy of Culinary Arts beginning at 6:30 p.m., and original dishes from 40 of the area’s best restaurants. An elegant dessert reception and live entertainment will complete the evening’s festivities.

Since 1984, the Gala has raised $3 million for scholarships at the Academy of Culinary Arts and Atlantic Cape Foundation operations. Tickets are $225 per person. For more information, contact Alicia McMackin at (609) 343-4986, email or visit

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