Dining Out for Life Turns 21

Supporting local AIDS organizations is as easy as eating out

As Dining Out for Life celebrates its 21st anniversary this year in Philly, more than 200 restaurants are participating in the annual event on April 28 – including many LGBT venues. And according to one of the beneficiaries – ActionAIDS – money really matters.

“Philadelphia has four times as many people infected with HIV/AIDS than the national average. Times are tight, but every meal, every drink, helps make a difference in the lives of our neighbors, friends and families who live with this disease day-in, day-out,” says Kevin Burns, executive director of ActionAIDS.

Yep, that means you can eat and drink all you want (calories, be damned) – with the money going to local AIDS charities.

Five restaurants – London Grill, Mexican Post, Rembrandts, Venture Inn and Westbury – are participating again this year as they always have since the event first launched humbly in 1991.

Dining Out for Life may be home-grown, but it’s turned into an international event – raising $4 million annually in more than 50 cities. Participating restaurants donate 33 percent of proceeds from this night on the town (that’s a percentage of the whole bill – whether you have martinis for dinner – or a burrito). Money raised even stays in the local community to fund local care, prevention, education, testing, counseling and other essential AIDS services. Last year, Philadelphia’s Dining Out for Life raised $295,000.

If you choose to nosh for a good cause, the folks you’ll be helping to support include ActionAIDS, AIDS Delaware, Family & Community Service of Delaware County, Planned Parenthood Association of Bucks County and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania (PPSEPA), as well as Dooley House in Camden, N.J., which assists children living with HIV/AIDS.

As many as 200 restaurants in the region are participating – this includes many popular LGBT-friendly venues: Barbuzzo, Beau Monde, Cantina Dos Segundos, Cantina Los Caballitos, El Vez, Giorgio on the Pine, Johnny Brenda’s, Knock, Latest Dish, Lolita, Mercato, Mixto, More Than Just Ice Cream, Royal Tavern, Sampan, Square 1682, Terra, Tria Wash West, Valanni, Varga Bar, Venture Inn, Westbury Bar, Woody’s and The Raven.

Make your reservations today.

A complete list of restaurants is available by calling 877-EAT4LIFE or by stopping by the Dining Out for Life Philly website.