RICHMOND, Va. – This weekend you can pair the first meal of the day with a good cause, as Richmond Brunch Weekend adds more restaurants to its third annual fundraiser to help the Massey Alliance.
This year over 40 restaurants are participating and will donate 15 percent of brunch sales to support Massey Alliance, in support of the VCU Massey Cancer Center. Last year, 31 restaurants participated and 10 percent of sales were donated.
In 2016, writers Keith Zirkle and Sara Woznicki, who publish the blog “As Told Over Brunch,” brainstormed how to combine community fundraising with their favorite meal, when Massey Alliance saw their online posts and reached out to them.
In a partnership as complimentary as mimosas are to quiche, the Richmond Brunch Weekend was served up. Over the past two years they have raised close to $25,000, Zirkle said. The goal this year is $20,000.
VCU Massey Center extends treatment to all patients who seek their help, despite their income. The Massey Alliance has a safety net goal of $550,000, raised over a five-year period, through events like the Massey Challenge and Massey on the River. Funding goes into research, trials, and treatment. Richmond Brunch Weekend helps fundraise money that is used to help cancer patients.
“Everyone has some type of connection to cancer, whether its personal or through a friend or family member,” Zirkle said. “It’s raising money and saving lives.”
The breakfast-centric event kicks off with a Friday evening affair from 6 to 9 p.m. at The Graduate’s rooftop, the Byrd House. The $40 event includes brunch-themed appetizers and two drinks, and is wait listed at this point, but tickets will open, so sign up. The cooler spring weather has created a back-up plan to host the event in the not-yet-open-to-the-public game room, which also grants access to a courtyard.
“We donate to Massey for Massey on the River and formed a really good relationship,” said Tayler Anderson, with The Graduate. “They wanted something that people were really excited about and they reached out to us [to host].”
“Our goal is to be the living room of the community so we really try to partner with as many local business and charities as we can,” Anderson added. “Massey is such a big part of the city and a great partner to have.”
Other new additions to the weekend event include the Brunch Bar by Nightingale ice cream sandwiches, which is blueberry maple ice cream between two French toast cookies. Ten percent of Brunch Bar sales go the Massey, and the bar can be found at Shields Market, Ellwood Thompson, Foo Dog, Fat Dragon, Sandston Smokehouse, Union Market, Ardent Craft Ales, Wild Ginger, Bejing on Grove, Wong Gonzalez, and Osaka Sushi.
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First round of the Brunch Bar went out today to @wonggonzalezrva @beijingongrove @osakasushirr @fatdragonrva @foodogrva @fatdragonrva Cinnamon Sugar French Toast Cookie, Blueberry Maple Ice Cream. A portion of the proceeds go to support @vcumassey Each Thursday of March a gift card will be given to someone who post a picture of the brunch bar and tags @RichmondBrunch and @nightingaleicecream with the hashtag #RVAbrunchbar.
Faith Wilkerson, of UnlockingRVA, has created the Brunch Trolley, that takes passengers on a progressive brunch between Social 52, Tarrant’s West, and MatchBox in Short Pump. The ride is $65 and includes an entrée and drink at each location. Tickets can be found here.
This year restaurants like Metro, Saison and Mable’s Espresso donated over $1,200 in gift cards that can be won by participating in the #RVADoubleBrunch challenge. Eat brunch both days, then post a picture of it on social media with the hashtag and you will be entered to win prize packages.
Zirkle and Woznicki have reviewed many of the restaurants on their As Told By Brunch website, which you can view here.
Donations can also be made directly to the Massey Alliance online, here.
Restaurants participating both Saturday and Sunday are:
City Diner, On the Rox, Matchbox Vintage Pizza, Social 52, The Graduate, Ponies& Pints, Bottom Burger, Caturra on Grove, Lunch & Supper, The Grill, Village Café, Baja Bean, Metro, Max’s, Postbellum, Tarrant’s West, Tarrant’s, Little Saint, The Savory Grain, Saison Market, Capital Ale House, 3 Monkeys, Star-Lite, Strawberry Street Café, My Noodle and Bar, 23rd and Main, Les Crepes, District 5, Weezie’s Kitchen, and Joes’ Inn.
Restaurants participating only on Sunday are:
Southern Railway Taphouse, Cornerstone, Sedona Taphouse, The Shaved Duck, Havana 59, Conch Republic, Stella’s, Contintental Divide, Camel, Bistro 27, Speakeasy.
**Mable’s Espresso and Bakery is only participating on Saturday.