Blue Chip Casino Pulls Out All the Stops Once Again for the La Porte County United Way

By: Caitlin Vanlaningham Last Updated: March 15, 2013

It was an event of good taste, dapper refinement and a splash of lighthearted raucousness; that was the Super Smoke Social event held at the Blue Chip Casino, Hotel and Spa Thursday evening. It was a fundraiser for the United Way of La Porte County. Blue Chip Casino is a big supporter of the United Way, and they are always in cahoots with each other, looking for unique and special ways to give back to the community.

“We love coming out to support the United Way,” Len Nelson, President of United Beverage of South Bend said. “I’m having a great time. We know that there are a lot of disadvantaged people in this community as well as other communities around the state and we want to do anything to help support them. It’s what this is all about.”

The Super Smoke Social hit right on the mark that evening. This event catered to the cigar aficionados of NorthwestIndiana. At 6pm many sharply dressed men (which every girl’s crazy about) as well as some lovely ladies came to take part in the benefit. They were immediately greeted by the Blue Chip’s professional and friendly staff as well as staff from outside distributors and their staff. The wait staff offered guests delectable appetizers while they milled about the banquet hall and bid on silent auction items and entered raffles for items that were generously donated by local businesses. Guests also had the privilege of smoking some excellent cigars provided by Ashton Distributors, Inc. as well as an open bar and whiskey and cognac tastings. This meant that a myriad of drinks and concoctions could be made to compliment the taste and experience of the cigars.

“We’re going to have a great evening,”Andrew Neal, La Porte County United Way Chairman of the Board of Directors said at the beginning of the event. “We have a nice steak dinner planned, open bar, silent auctions as well as live auctions. It should be a tremendous evening. This is our fourth Super Smoke Social. We have a great turnout so far and there’s a line outside.”

La Porte County United Way’s Executive Director, Kris Pate, seconded Neal’s enthusiasm.

“This has been done for years to benefit the United Way. And all the money that is raised in this particular event goes to the United Way of La Porte County. There are some incredible auction items here,” Pate exclaimed. “United Way is different from other Non-profits. Generally non-profits provide a service, like a program, to the community. Those are very valuable. But United Way is like a catalyst or facilitator that brings those agencies together to work on some of the big picture needs of a community. It’s so grass-roots. We don’t sit in our office and delegate where funds go, we get with the community and they decide where the money needs to go to have the best benefit.”

There about thirty items available in the silent auction and seven in the live auction which took place during dinner. Some items up for bid for the live auction were trips to Ireland, Africa, Costa Rica and other exotic locales. The silent auction included autographed pictures, high quality liquors and cigars, specialty gift baskets and a lot more. And for dinner, guests were treated to a four-course meal starting with a creamy lobster bisque. Following that was a wedge salad with fresh vegetables, crispy bacon and creamy blue cheese. The main course was a generously sized bone-in steak topped with a rich demi-glace, stuffed shrimp in a lovely cream sauce, twice-baked potatoes with hand-piped filling, and fresh steamed asparagus. For dessert was a well-plated piece of chocolate heaven. A package of cigars was at the place settings at every table along with a pairing menu of what cigar went with what course. Guests were able to smoke during the event and this was a way to bring out the best flavors in the food as well as the cigar and enhance the experiences of the evening.

“All of the money generated tonight is going to be donated to the United Way of La Porte County,”Jack Elia, the Assistant General Manager for Blue Chip Casino said. “100 percent of the auction sales and part of the ticket sales. We do a lot of work with the United Way. We really love being involved with the charity and we’d do anything for them. I’m having a ball!”

After dinner was finished and the auctions were closed, guests stayed and enjoyed the remainder of the event by chatting with one another over a nightcap and a fine cigar. Anyone who attended left satisfied. It was a great evening with great friends and businesses who all came together for a great cause.

Don’t miss another awesome event at the Blue Chip Casino: Blue Chip Brewfest! It takes place at the casino on April 13, 2013 from 12pm to 4pm. Click here to find our more!

Click here to go to the Blue Chip Casino's Facebook page!

And click here to check out the United Way of La Porte County's Facebook page!

This event was presented by: Sauers Buick GMC; The Golden Leaf Cigars; Ashton Distributors, Inc.; Blue Chip Casino, Hotel and Spa and the United Way of La Porte County.

Other Sponsors included: NIPSCO;Indiana Beverage; HR Dimensions; Hennessy; and Budweiser.

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