Top Dallas chefs, dinner, live entertainment, and pie auction expected to raise

$25,000 for hospitality workforce development

DALLAS, TX (September 13, 2021) – More than a dozen of Dallas’ top chefs will gather together for one night to raise money for FestEvents Foundation, an organization dedicated to workforce sustainability and development in the restaurant and hospitality industry. Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show will include award-winning chefs such as Anastasia Quiñones-Pittman, Bruno Davaillon and Matt Balke preparing dinner for 12 guests each within their own mini kitchen theaters, while live entertainers such as comedians, magicians and an aerialist perform on a center stage.

Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show will take place Thursday, October 28 from 7 – 10 p.m. at On the Levee, 1108 Quaker Street in the Design District.  Individual ticket prices range from $300 to $500.  There are three levels of table sponsorships: Promote, Inspire and Elevate.

Promote – $2,500 Benefits include

One scholarship in your/your company’s name

Two tickets to Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show

Choose your chef (first come first served)

Logo placement on website and bidding platform

Right of first refusal for 2022 sponsorships

Inspire – $5,000 Benefits include

Two scholarships in you/your company’s name

Table for six at Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show

Choose your chef (first come first served)

Logo placement on website and bidding platform

Right of first refusal for 2022 sponsorships

Elevate – $10,000 Benefits include

Three scholarships in your/your company’s name

Two tables of six at Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show

Choose your chefs (first come first served)

Pie Buffett for 20 people on Pie Day (3.14.22)

Logo placement on website and bidding platform

Right of first refusal for 2022 sponsorships

Piehole Project Live! will include a cocktail hour, dinner, entertainment, a pie raffle and some entertainment and culinary surprises.

Piehole Project’s Second Annual Pie Auction will feature pies baked and donated by some of Dallas’ most distinguished chef and will also include unique auction items such as cooking alongside a chef. Chefs and bakers including Junior Borges of Meridien, Dunia Borga of La Duni and Matt McCallister of Homewood are donating pies. The Pie Auction will be conducted online and will launch October 18 and conclude on October 28. The link to the Pie Auction is

Created and produced by Alison Matis and Cheryl Weis of FestEvents Group, Piehole Project Live! The Variety Show is an extension of last year’s successful Piehole Project Pie Auction which raised $14,000 from the sale of specialty pies from distinguished chefs and bakers throughout Dallas.  Funds raised were donated to five culinary students: Jackson Yarbrough, Le Bich Ngoc Vo, both of UNT; Tyrone Crawford, Ogechi Melkam, and Marixa Hernandez all of Dallas College.

Matis and Weis established FestEvents Foundation in 2019 to help support the industry that feeds bodies and souls and, in 2019, generated $63.5 billion to the Texas economy. Matis, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and Weis, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, co-own a successful event production business that pivoted dramatically in 2020. The pair connected with other local hospitality leaders and suppliers to create Staff Meal, a massive effort that provided more than 50,000 meals to hospitality and restaurant workers left jobless due to COVID-19. Staff Meal also provided meals from local restaurants to Dallasites when Winter Storm Uri left tens of thousands of North Texans without power or water.

“The restaurant and hospitality industries are a huge part of my life,” said co-founder Alison Matis. “I’ve been in them for almost 20 years and my husband is a chef. It’s not always easy but it is very rewarding and there are great career opportunities in it,” she added.

Co-founder Cheryl Weis left a business career to be in this industry and said, “I started my career in the consulting business for a top firm, but the excitement of the hospitality and restaurant world drew me in. I left project management for catering and events and never looked back.”

Tickets and sponsorships are for sale on EventBrite at

About FestEvents Group and FestEvents Foundation 

FestEvents Group is Dallas’ premier event production company that specializes in food-centric festivals, galas, fundraisers, and public and private events. Founded in 2017 by Alison Matis and Cheryl Weis, FestEvents has planned and executed some of the most successful events in Dallas, including Taste of Dallas, Dallas Arboretum Food & Wine Festival, Chefs for Farmers, and Go Oak Cliff’s Mardi Gras parade. 

FestEvents Foundation is a 501c3 organization that supports workforce development in the restaurant and hospitality industries in North Texas.  Founded by Alison Matis and Cheryl Weis in 2019, FestEvents Foundation engages in strategic partnerships with like-minded organizations in the Food & Beverage industry to provide scholarships, professional development, and assistance to those looking to make a career in the restaurant industry. 

The Foundation’s most notable projects include Staff Meal, an outreach that prepared and delivered more than 50,000 meals for unemployed and COVID-19-displaced restaurant and hospitality workers, and Piehole Project, which started in 2020 as an online pie auction and continues in 2021 with an in-person dinner-and-a-show event.  Matis and Weis have raised more than $40,000 for the Chefs of Tomorrow Culinary and Hospitality Scholarship fund.

Quotes from Participating Chefs and Industry Leader

Ashleigh Wright, Executive Pastry Chef

“I received $50,000 in scholarships the year I graduated high school. I came from a low-income family and was even homeless for a period of time in high school. These scholarships were the foundation for the success I have found in life. They helped me find my purpose and giving back is where it comes full circle.” Ashleigh Wright – Executive Pastry Chef, The Star – World Headquarters of the Dallas Cowboys

Brian Luscher, Chef and Culinary Director

“The scholarships (I received) were everything at the time. I had nothing while at the CIA except a job washing pots and pans in the scullery just to prove to the school that I was making every effort to pay my tuition. Not only did they provide financial relief but fortified the notion that I actually did deserve to attend classes at the prestigious institution.” Brian Luscher – Executive Chef/Culinary Director – 33 Restaurant Group

Steve DeShazo, Senior Director, Workforce/Career Connected Learning at Dallas College and Director of the Culinary, Pastry and Hospitality program at Dallas College 

“There has never been a better time to begin a professional career in a new and enlightened hospitality industry. It is an industry that requires passion for service and true hospitality spirit. FestEvents Foundation’s scholarship support for local workforce development exemplifies that spirit.”

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