Friday, March 27, 2009

Bar Celona to host "Foster Soles" benefit for Hillsides

With over 500,000 children in foster care nationwide, one Pasadena restaurant is stepping up to help those foster care children living in Los Angeles. Bar Celona, a modern Spanish tapas bar, restaurant and lounge, is hosting the launch of Hillsides “Foster Soles” on April 30.

Hillsides “Foster Soles,” an online auction of celebrity autographed shoes, will raise funds for the foster care children living at Hillsides, which creates safe places for children and families in Los Angeles County, including Pasadena. With the aim of also raising awareness of foster care issues, the online auction has already drawn the attention of many celebrities and their autographed shoes. Celebrities include Elton John and his band, Shia LeBeouf, cast of USA Television Network’s “Burn Notice” Jeffrey Donovan, Bruce Campbell, and Gabrielle Anwar, Jack Johnson, Dave Koz, Marlee Matlin’s “Dancing with the Stars” shoes as well as her dancing partner’s, Fabian Sanchez, Cheryl Farrell, among many more.

Celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis has also donated shoes for the online auction. A world-renowned metal sculpture artist, Bruce Gray, has also donated a tabletop shoe sculpture which will be displayed.

At Bar Celona, celebrities will have entrance into the VIP lounge which includes complimentary Bar Celona signature sangria and Spanish champagne (cava). Additionally for their pleasure, Bar Celona will have an on-site sommelier to host a Spanish wine-tasting session in the VIP lounge with Spanish cheeses, meats and charcuterie and the chef’s selection of Spanish tapas. Guests will have an opportunity to bid on the celebrity autographed shoes, which will also be displayed at the venue, while sipping on signature sangria and savoring tapas. To add to the festivities, guests are encouraged to wear their funniest or wildest shoes for an additional evening contest.

Bar Celona and its sister restaurant, Villa SORRISO, are located in the historic Colorado Boulevard retail district of Old Pasadena, and are the creation of local restaurateurs Jack Huang and Karen Huang, who is also on the board of directors of the foster care charity. Set on a stage of rich crimson red and hues of mellow mustard, Bar Celona invokes the traditions of the traditional tapas bars of Spain, with handcrafted murals of ‘the running of the bulls,’ wine offerings geared toward those of the Spanish vineyards, house made sangrias, and the popular small plates that trigger a smiling sigh.

Guests who bid on April 30 will get a chance to vie for celebrity shoes with online visitors until the auction’s closing date, May 15.

Bar Celona, celebrities, and bidders of Hillsides “Foster Soles” can be assured that putting their best foot forward ensures a better pathway for foster care children.

To learn more about the foster care children’s charity or Hillsides “Foster Soles,” visit

About Hillsides: As a Pasadena foster care charity founded in 1913, Hillsides creates safe places for children at risk and their families by providing residential care, mental health services to break the cycle of domestic violence, special education, and advocacy. To learn more about Hillsides, visit

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