Bake a Difference

By August 15, 2012Philanthropy

Not to toot our own horn, but the recent Cupcakes & Cocktails philanthropy event was a tremendous success.

We raised over $4500 for Bake A Wish, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit which provides cakes and other baked goods to those in need here in Austin.

It was an incredible evening of cupcakes, cocktails, and a whole lot of fun – all for a great cause. Bake A Wish will be using the funds raised to support and broaden their mission to serve more of those in need in the Austin community. The money will be used to purchase baking supplies as well as partially fund technological improvements for the group’s cake request system. Madelyn Varella, director, and Karen Nichols, the founder and president of Bake A Wish, both see the funds raised as an investment in the future.

“I am so excited for the future of our organization …. that is how we view the donation – as an investment in our vision and in the agencies and individuals we serve. We are honored and humbled by the generosity you all have shown us,” shares Madelyn Varella, Director of Bake A Wish.

Bake A Wish also reports that they have seen an increase in visibility through this event and have increased their pool of volunteers by around 25%!

The Austin Food Blogger Alliance invited five local bakers to come up with their take on the theme of cocktail-inspired cupcakes and what they came up with was truly inspired. Unfortunately, a winner was not declared at the event due to some voting irregularities. Each of these cupcakes and the bakers behind them deserve recognition for their tasty creations and their thoughtful donation to this event. Special thanks also goes to Bill Bartz of Dream Pixel Photography who provided photographic coverage for the event and the photos you see below.

Barrie Cullinan of Amity Bakery provided these tempting Black & White Russian cupcakes.

Heidi Swiderski of Envy Pastries thrilled with her Black Cherry Pomegranate Martini cupcakes.

Jessica Forkner of Objects of Confection brought a refreshing cupcake twist on the classic Arnold Palmer.

Olivia O’Neal of Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop (represented by Andrea Leck, General Manager) shared a boozy, sweet cupcake from the Bakeshop’s menu, the Steve’s Special, with guests of the event.

And Stephanie Dobos of Sugar N’ Spice Patisserie, who has volunteered with Bake A Wish almost since its inception, brought her Texas Tea cupcakes.

The Austin Food Blogger Alliance would like to thank the many generous donors and sponsors who made this event possible. The AT&T Conference Center and Hotel provided a stunning venue and support for this event. The catering provided by Chef Josh Watkins and the staff of The Carillon Restaurant was the perfect counterpoint to the evening’s sweeter offerings, the cocktail-themed cupcakes created by Amity Bakery, Envy Pastries, Objects of Confection, Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop, and Sugar N’ Spice Patisserie. The Central Market/Westgate floral department provided the beautiful floral arrangements and Bill Bartz of Dream Pixel Photography provided photographic coverage and images of the event. Greenling sponsored the text-to-vote feature and provided technical support for the Cocktail-themed Cupcake Challenge. Swank Audio Visuals provided audio/visual support and sponsorship for the event.

We’d also like to thank the many donors to the event’s Silent Auction:

The Traveling Tea Party, LLC


 Savory Spice Shop on West Sixth Street

Make It Sweet


somaspace pilates

The Hip Girl’s Guide to Homemaking

The Trailer Food Diaries

Well Fed: Paleo Recipes for People Who Love to Eat

Breed & Co.

Way Out West Austin

Lauren Wyler, independent consultant with The Pampered Chef

Vinca USA

Key Ingredient

Central Market/Westgate

Jane Ko of A Taste of Koko and Macarons by Jane

Heather Santos of midnitechef

Dawn Orsak of The Svacina Project 

b.o.m bakery

Easy Tiger

Torchy’s Tacos

Johnson’s Backyard Garden

Tecolote Farm

Wheatsville Food Co-op

Faraday’s Kitchen Store

Red’s Porch


Cafe Monet

You’ll also find them listed here, along with the items they donated to help us raise over $2500 in the Silent Auction alone!

My personal thanks go out to the members of the Austin Food Blogger Alliance Philanthropy Committee who worked tirelessly to make this event a success. And most importantly, thank you to all who came out in support of Bake A Wish and the philanthropic mission of the Austin Food Blogger Alliance. We’ll see you next year!


Michelle Fandrich, Philanthropy Chair

The Kid Can Cook

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