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Maggiano's Little Italy(R) Celebrates Sixth Annual 'Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish(R)' in Chicago
Date:6/4/2009

Special Menu Items, Co-Branded Gift Cards, Inspiring Star Cards Make Giving Easy

DALLAS, June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Starting today, Chicago-area Maggiano's Little Italy(R) restaurants begin the sixth annual "Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish" program to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation(R). All five Chicago-area Maggiano's are taking part in the program through July 1, giving guests several ways to support the nonprofit organization that makes wishes come true for children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Throughout the fundraiser, Maggiano's will feature a specially designed "Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish" menu. When guests select items from this menu, Maggiano's will donate $1 per food item and $ .50 per drink to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. This year's Chef-created selections include:

  • Mediterranean Bruschetta - an appetizer featuring Fontina fondue topped with fresh asparagus and artichoke relish baked on crispy garlic bread.
  • Bolognese Stuffed Shells - jumbo pasta shells stuffed with Italian seasoned beef and Asiago cheese, baked with a light tomato cream sauce.
  • Chicken Romano with Angel Hair - tender herb and Parmesan-crusted chicken served over angel hair pasta with artichokes, garlic and tomatoes in a light lemon butter sauce.
  • Seared Shrimp al' Arrabbiata - pan-seared shrimp tossed with roasted peppers, fresh garlic, capers and olives in a homemade spicy tomato sauce and served over tender orzo pasta.
  • Berry Tiramisu - a decadent seasonal twist on our classic dessert, layered with fresh blueberries, blackberries and strawberries.
  • Star Lemon Cookies - special star-shaped versions of Maggiano's traditional glazed lemon cookies.
  • Sparkling Peach Lemonade - a refreshing blend of peach puree and sparkling lemonade, garnished with vanilla sugar and a fresh mint leaf.

Guests also may contribute by purchasing gift cards co-branded for Maggiano's and the Make-A-Wish Foundation. For every $25 in gift cards sold, Maggiano's will contribute $1 to the Foundation.

Guests may also make a direct donation by purchasing a Star Card - a decorative, star-shaped cutout detailed with the guest's name. 100 percent of the amount paid for the Star Card directly benefits the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and all cards will be displayed in the restaurant throughout the campaign. Each Star Card features one of two inspiring stories of a wish kid's visit to Maggiano's locations in New Jersey and California.

"At Maggiano's, we're all about celebrating life and love with family and friends. Our partnership with the Make-A-Wish Foundation enables us to extend that spirit to the Make-A-Wish families," said Wyman Roberts, president of Maggiano's Little Italy. "For five years, our guests and teammates have been inspired by the phenomenal strength and bright attitudes displayed by everyone associated with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and with the help of our guests, we want to ensure they get the support they need to keep providing that inspiration for years to come."

In the preceding five years, the "Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish" program has raised more than $700,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Maggiano's restaurants nationwide also have hosted events to honor Make-A-Wish kids, such as send-off parties before their wishes or birthday parties with family and friends.

"Maggiano's continues to find compelling ways to involve its guests through the annual 'Eat-A-Dish for Make-A-Wish' program," said David Williams, Make-A-Wish Foundation of America president and chief executive officer. "We know the easier it is to give, the more likely consumers are to participate. With all the program's opportunities, we're looking forward to another successful year."

Guests may visit one of the following area restaurants: downtown at Clark and Grand, in Naperville on Freedom Drive, the location in Oak Brook in the Oakbrook Shopping Center, the Schaumburg Maggiano's near the Woodfield Mall, and the Old Orchard location in Skokie.

About Maggiano's Little Italy

Maggiano's Little Italy specializes in Italian-American cuisine served in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Maggiano's menu features both classic and contemporary recipes -- authentic pastas, signature salads, prime steaks, fresh seafood, regular chef specials and specialty desserts. Maggiano's 45 locations worldwide offer lunch and dinner, delivery, carryout service and banquet spaces for special occasions. Maggiano's is one of three restaurant brands in the portfolio of Dallas-based Brinker International (NYSE: EAT), one of the world's largest casual dining companies, with more than 1,700 restaurants in 27 countries. Other Brinker restaurant brands include Chili's(R) Grill & Bar and On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina(R). For more information, visit www.maggianos.com.

About the Make-A-Wish Foundation

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Founded in 1980 when a group of caring volunteers helped a young boy fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer, the Foundation is now the largest wish-granting charity in the world, with 65 chapters in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and nearly 25,000 volunteers, the Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish every 40 minutes and has granted more than 174,000 wishes in the United States since its inception. For more information about the Make-A-Wish Foundation, visit wish.org and discover how you can share the power of a wish(R).


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SOURCE Maggiano's Little Italy
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