Taylor Haugen’s Savor the Season fundraiser scheduled

Special to GateHouse Media Florida
Guests will also enjoy live entertainment by Destin saxophonist Michael J Thomas. [CONTRIBUTED PHOTO]

Tickets are on sale now for the Taylor Haugen Foundation’s 10th Annual Savor the Season. The fundraiser will be on the evening of Oct. 24 at the Emerald Grande at HarborWalk Village in Destin. As the last edition, this is a must attend fundraiser.

Since the inception in 2009, the Taylor Haugen Foundation's annual fundraiser, Savor the Season, has served as a catalyst for safety in youth football. What started 10 years ago to share Taylor's story and to educate others about abdominal injuries has turned into one of the area's premier wine and food pairing fundraisers. The Emerald Coast’s top chefs will each present a uniquely crafted food and wine pairing for attendees to enjoy in a walkabout environment.

Each of the chef’s tastings will be perfectly paired with hand selected wines, provided by Southern Wine and Spirits. Guests will enjoy a silent auction and an exciting live auction. Auction items feature vacations, unique experiences, fishing trips, spa treatments and more. The exciting wine pull allows guests to randomly select a fine wine from the display and potentially walk away with a bottle worth hundreds of dollars.

Tickets are $100 per person and can be purchased online at THFSavorTheSeason.org. Ten years of Savor the Season has helped the foundation build and recognize youth leaders and promote abdominal sports safety to honor the legacy of Taylor Haugen, a Niceville High School wide receiver who tragically passed away in 2008 from an abdominal injury sustained in a football game. The funds raised go directly toward The Foundation’s Youth Equipment for Sports Safety (YESS) program and provide scholarships for outstanding local student athletes. As of summer 2019, The Foundation has now outfitted over 5,000 student athletes across 14 states with new high-tech, next generation abdominal protective gear, including over 3,000 of these student athletes in our local area. And, the Foundation has awarded over $70,000 in scholarships since its founding.

The lineup of culinary talent this year includes:

• Christopher Holbrook, Executive Chef at Signature Catering of 30A

• Ruston Johnson, Executive Chef at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse

• Lee Guidry, Executive Chef of Seagar’s Prime Steaks & Seafood

• Heidi McAnulla, Chef at Bake My Day

• Mark Eichin, Executive Chef at Restaurant Paradis

• Dan Pettis, Owner and Executive Chef at One 20-A Modern Bistro

• Culinary team at Grande Vista Bar & Grill within The Emerald Grande

• Gary Palm, Executive Chef at Primrose Restaurant within The Henderson Resort

For information on sponsorship opportunities, contact THF8080@gmail.com or call 850-842-9093.