ATTLEBORO - New Hope will again be serving up a fun-filled feast at its annual Gourmet Guys' community event and this year will be especially meaningful for the group as it will mark the 25th year for the fundraiser.

The silver anniversary event will be held Friday, Nov. 21 at Attleboro Elks Lodge 1014 at 887 South Main St. (Route 152). Doors will open at 6:30 p.m., with dinner being served some time after 7 p.m.

Proceeds from the event benefit New Hope's many programs that assist individuals and families affected by domestic and sexual violence throughout Southeastern and Central Massachusetts.

Gourmet Guys is one of the agency's major fundraisers of the year, and this is how it works:

Each year, about 50 Gourmet Guys - including local officials, businessmen, police officers, firefighters, area residents, and even a few chefs - cook their favorite dishes and donate their time and resources to support the organization. They'll be serving up all types of dishes from ginger carrot soup to teriyaki chicken.

"New Hope salutes the chefs of Gourmet Guys, partners in our mission to eliminate domestic and sexual violence.

For 25 years, local chefs have stepped up to the stove to raise money for New Hope clients while creating and serving an array of foods for families and friends," said New Hope's Interim Executive Director Marcia Szymanski.

More than 300 people are expected to attend the event which also includes many raffle baskets and a 25th anniversary surprise.

Attendees can take a chance at winning a prize in the Mystery Box. Keys will be sold for $5 each and if your key opens the box, you'll win a piece of jewelry donated by Attleboro Jewelers.

"Together with the wonderful chefs, our sponsors, volunteers, raffle donors and committee members have made Gourmet Guys a must-attend event every year in the Greater Attleboro area. This year promises to be even bigger and includes a 25th anniversary surprise," said Szymanski.

The Dion family are among those who have made Gourmet Guys a family affair for years. Brothers John and Tom Dion, for example, cook their favorite dishes together.

Tom, a lieutenant in the Attleboro Police, served on New Hope's board of directors for six years. He recruited his brother John, who is an associate professor of culinary arts at Johnson & Wales University.

"I'm my brother's ringer," said John Dion.

"He's a chef. I'm a police officer. I'm his assistant," said Tom Dion.

They'll be making barbecue beef brisket with a Carolina-style sauce and cornbread this year. In the past, they've cooked pulled pork, chicken wings and beef dishes. They always run out of food.

Their parents, Robert and Joan Dion, have been attending the event for years. Robert is retired from the Attleboro Police.

Tom says New Hope is a "great organization" and he and his brother are looking forward to returning to the event.

"It's a good thing to do for the community. It's nice to give back, and to reconnect with old friends from Attleboro," said John Dion.

New Hope is still accepting chefs for the event.

Tickets are available by email, phone and online. For more information, email or 508-226-4015 ext. 2145.

LAURA CALVERLEY is a freelance writer for The Sun Chronicle. She can be reached at

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