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This tasty food event helps feed hungry children in Palm Beach County

For all the luxurious ingredients involved in next week’s Taste of the Nation grand tasting event at the Kravis Center, the most freely wielded ingredient is compassion

The dozens of chefs involved in the fundraising effort donate their time, their cooking, their food and their continued commitment to the cause of eradicating childhood hunger. The annual event, which takes over the Kravis’ Cohen Pavilion on April 20, benefits the No Kid Hungry campaign organized by the national Share Our Strength anti-hunger organization. 

On the local front, this means 100 percent of donations support area and state agencies that help Palm Beach County children and families get the federally funded meals that often are out of reach due to bureaucracy. 

Think of those funded meals as a bottle of milk for a crying baby – except the baby is in West Palm Beach and the milk bottle is sitting in Washington D.C. This is Trudy Novicki’s analogy to illustrate the kinds of efforts the “No Kid Hungry” drive supports. As president and CEO of Florida Impact, one of the agencies that work closely with the drive, she helps direct that bottle to the crying baby. 

The sheer need of struggling children and families stands in sharp contrast to the complexities of anti-hunger efforts. 

That need can be traced in some startling numbers, like the 2 million afterschool snacks that have been served to children of struggling families at Palm Beach County public schools this year, notes Julie Kreafle, Florida Impact’s South Florida program coordinator. Some 62 percent of the county’s public school students are on free or reduced-price meals, she says. 

“Many of their parents are working two or three jobs and they’re still not able to make ends meet. So these kids are receiving healthy, nutritious meals that may be their last real meal of the day,” she says. 

To that end, the county’s top chefs join dozens of other food and drink purveyors each year at the Kravis event. Each year, it is the largest one-night, chef-driven culinary event in the county. 

Taste of the Nation Palm Beach 

When: Thursday, April 20, from 7 to 10 p.m. (VIP open at 6 p.m.) 

Where: Kravis Center’s Cohen Pavilion, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach 

Admission: This is a 21-and-older event. General admission $125, VIP $200; buy tickets at 

Ticket packages: $150 for general admission and after-party at The Regional; $225 for VIP admission and after-party. 

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