Mark your calendars for Thursday, Aug. 25. On that day, over 34 local restaurants and breweries will be raising funds to support the work of Children’s Wisconsin Hospital.
Among them are The Calderone Club Downtown and San Giorgio Pizzeria Napoletana, restaurants owned by the Fazzari family, who created the event Do Good with Food in collaboration with the Milwaukee Kitchen Cabinet.
The annual event was inspired by Vivianna, the Fazzari’s nine-year-old daughter whose life was saved by the Emergency Department and Trauma Center and Neonatal Intensive Care teams at Children’s Wisconsin.
The inaugural Do Good with Food took place in 2019. That first year, the Fazzaris donated a percentage of restaurant sales to Children’s Wisconsin on their daughter’s birthday. Now in its third year, the event has grown from 7 to 34 participating restaurants and breweries.
“I can’t imagine what our life would be without Vivianna. Our family is incredibly thankful to the 34 restaurants and breweries — 27 of which are new — who will help recognize the miracle of our daughter,” said dad Gino Fazzari. “More importantly, they are helping support the miracles that happen every day at Children’s Wisconsin. I hope every one of their establishments are full, so we can raise more money and help save the lives of even more kids.”
In 2013, shortly after bringing their newborn Viviana home from the hospital, Leanne and Gino Fazzari noticed that she was lethargic and her skin was rapidly losing its pink tone. They immediately drove her straight to Children’s Wisconsin, where they knew they’d get the best care.
As Leanne carried her new baby into the Emergency Department, Vivianna stopped breathing. A Children’s Wisconsin nurse walking out of the Emergency Department took one look at the baby, grabbed the car seat and rushed her inside. A code blue was called, alerting the emergency team that a child had stopped breathing and needed to be resuscitated. While the team was able to revive her, she was unable to breathe on her own, so she was put on a ventilator and admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).
That first night, the Fazzaris were told their baby might not make it. She was still not breathing on her own and doctors were unsure of the cause.
However, Vivianna persevered and during her 27-day stay in the NICU doctors determined a thoracic duct tear was the root cause. During feeding, the tear caused breast milk to leak into her chest cavity, which ultimately forced one of her lungs to collapse and her heart to shift its weight onto her other lung, suffocating her. Thanks to her quick diagnosis and expert care, Vivianna fully recovered. Today, she is a happy, thriving young girl.
“If it had not been for the quick thinking and highly skilled team working that day, our daughter would not be here with us today,” said mom Leanne Fazzari. “Few emergency departments can, without notice, time to prepare, or proper diagnosis save a fully coded newborn.”
How "Do Good with Food" works
All you need to do to support Do Good with Food is choose to patronize one of the 34 participating restaurants on Thursday, Aug. 25.
In turn, each establishment will donate a percentage of food and/or beverage sales to Children’s Wisconsin. Funds will support Children’s Emergency Department and NICU, plus a new support area: Children’s Nourishing Partners Program, which connects families to Children’s resources and community partnerships for access to nutritious food.
Participating venues include:
- 600 East Café
- Aria – The Restaurant at Saint Kate – Milwaukee
- Bacchus – A Bartolotta Restaurant
- Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro
- Black Husky Brewing
- Bobby’s Bar
- Bottle House 42
- Calderone Club (Downtown)
- Calderone Club (Fox Point)
- Egg & Flour Pasta Bar (Bay View)
- Harbor House
- Joey Gerard’s – A Bartolotta Supper Club
- Lou Malnati’s (Brookfield)
- Lou Malnati’s (Fox Point – Carry out and delivery only)
- Lou Malnati’s (Greenfield – Carry out and delivery only)
- Lou Malnati’s (Waukesha – Carry out and delivery only)
- Miller Time Pub & Grill (Milwaukee)
- Mo’s, A Place for Steaks
- Mr. B’s – A Bartolotta Steakhouse (Brookfield)
- Mr. B’s – A Bartolotta Steakhouse (Mequon)
- Oggie’s Kitchen & Bar
- Pizza Man (Milwaukee)
- Pizza Man (Wauwatosa)
- Pizza Man Pronto (Mequon)
- Ristorante Bartolotta dal 1993
- Saint Bibiana
- San Giorgio Pizzeria Napoletana
- Saz’s State House
- Timmer’s Resort
- Water Street Brewery (Delafield)
- Water Street Brewery (Grafton)
- Water Street Brewery (Oak Creek)
“We are incredibly grateful to the Fazzari family and all of the participating restaurants and breweries,” said Christine Baranoucky, vice president of engagement and stewardship, Children’s Wisconsin Foundation.
“Funds will not only support the Emergency Department and NICU, but also the new Nourishing Partners Program, which helps address the challenges that can limit access, availability and stability of nutritious food.”
Visit childrenswi.org/food to learn more.
Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club.
When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.