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Grill celebrates in hot weather

Community: Restaurant raises more than $18,000 for Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Posted: October 4, 2010 7:43 p.m.
Updated: October 5, 2010 4:55 a.m.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department brought a fire engine for children to tour.

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Despite triple-digit temperatures, Stonefire Grill estimated 2,500 people came out to support the restaurant’s fundraiser for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and to celebrate the eatery’s 10-year anniversary Sept. 26.

Stonefire Grill raised more than $18,000 for the cystic fibrosis cause. Co-owner Mary Harrigan said that the Stonefire Grill would match the amount of money raised when making the donation.

“We are so happy we could not only support the foundation, but also honor our loyal patrons who were able to come out to celebrate with us,” Harrigan said. “It’s because of them that we will be here in another 10 years.”

The local battalion of the Los Angeles County Fire Department contributed $500 to the fundraiser.

Members of the Fire Department also showed up in large numbers, buying meals and making one of their fire trucks available where children could climb into the cab for an inside view.

Served full meals for a donation, as well as slices of a massive 10-foot-by-10-foot carrot cake in honor of the event, patrons dined at umbrella-covered tables set up in the parking lot.

Diners were also treated to entertainment by local high school students and a K-Earth 101 Los Angeles radio station broadcast live from the event.

Giant carrot cake
Making the carrot cake for the event required mixing massive amounts of ingredients. Approximately 1,000 carrots, 200 pounds of cream cheese, 100 cups of walnuts, 200 cups of sugar, 400 pounds of flour and 776 eggs went into the creation of reportedly the world’s largest carrot cake.

Harrigan said the cake was assembled with the help of multiple restaurants who each baked large segments. Jill’s Cake Creations brought it all together by showing up at Stonefire Grill at 4 a.m. to assemble the cake.

Serving the community
The Harrigan sisters, Mary and Maureen, said the success of Stonefire Grill has enabled them to pursue their dream of reaching out to the communities they serve.

In honor of their mother, the sisters have developed two programs that serve that need: “Feeding the Need of the Community,” whereby local nonprofit groups may apply for a one-time, no-cost catering opportunity; and the Braveheart Awards, a financial grant program that helps women escape the cycle of domestic abuse.

On Monday, the restaurant donated a portion of the day’s proceeds in support of the Sheila R. Veloz Breast Imaging Center.

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has always been a favorite nonprofit organization of Stonefire Grill because the Harrigans have a nephew who suffers from the fatal lung disease.

The foundation is a leading national nonprofit in working to assure the development of the means to cure and control cystic fibrosis, and to improve the quality of life for those with the disease.

‘Fast-casual’ dining
The Harrigan sisters are from a large Catholic family of nine children. The sisters said the 11 members gathered nightly to enjoy spirited conversations, delicious food and a sense of family unity.

When the sisters set out to build a family restaurant, they wanted to redefine the concept of “family dining.”

They refer to the restaurant’s dining style as fast-casual. The food prepared comes from serving long-held family recipes.
Stonefire Grill is located at 23300 Cinema Drive in Santa Clarita.

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