Just weeks before kicking off pre-season action, San Francisco 49ers’ players, management, and coaches and Silicon Valley executives were busy donning aprons and serving as celebrity waiters for the sold-out, seventh annual Pasta Bowl at the Santa Clara Convention Center on July 24.
The family-style Italian charity dinner, presented by SanDisk in cooperation with the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, saw over 1,000 in attendance and raised more than $100,000 for the San Francisco 49ers Foundation to support City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley and Fresh Lifelines for Youth (FLY).
Kicking aside their cleats and pads, players and management took photos with 49ers fans and sponsors, signed autographs, laughed and ate dinner.
Prior to dinner, guests were treated to a reception, presented by US Bank, including a premier wine tasting with over a dozen exquisite vintners, hors d’oeuvres, a silent auction, youth activities including a pizza-building station by Pizza Party Santa Clara, Sourdough Sam, bocce ball, Gold Rush Cheerleaders, Niner Noise and photo opportunities with Dwight Clark and other 49ers alumni.
Vintners included Arkenstone Vineyards, Burgess Cellars, Anderson’s Conn Valley Vineyards & Ghost Horse Vineyards, Frazier Winery Farm Collective Napa Valley, Freeman Vineyard & Winery, Hartwell Estate Vineyards, JAX Vineyards, Pine Ridge Vineyards, Red Mare Wines, Rocca Family Vineyards, Roche Winery & Vineyards, Sbragia Family Vineyards, Sbribe Winery and Ziata Wines.
Championship sponsors included Advantel Networks, Avnet, BlackRock, HGST, Turner and Visa. Pro Bowl sponsors included DevCon, FedEx and See’s Candies.
Following dinner, 49ers Owner & Co-Chairman John York and Silicon Valley Leadership Group President & CEO Carl Guardino spoke, and a check was presentated to the event’s beneficiaries. A big surprise to attendees was the presentation of the team’s 2012 NFC championships rings, designed by Tiffany & Co. Many players opened their boxes at the tables and alongside guests.
City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley (http://www.cityyear.org/sanjose.aspx) is a dedicated volunteer corps serving children in school classrooms and in after school programs. They inspire youth to make positive choices, lead volunteers into transformative service and develop leadership skills.
Fresh Lifelines for Youth (http://flyprogram.org/) helps troubled teens learn to make healthy decisions. They provide at-risk and disadvantaged youth with vital information regarding the decisions they make in their lives.
The 49ers Foundation is the non-profit community funding extension of the San Francisco 49ers, and supports development programs for underserved youth that keep them safe, on track and in school. A significant portion of the foundation’s funding goes toward family violence prevention programs and activities that teach youth leadership and respect. Since 1992, the foundation has raised and donated over $20 million to local non-profit organizations, including $2.9 million in 2012. Visit www.49ers.com for more information.