The night before the first official day of training camp, the 49ers kicked off the 2012 philanthropic season, hosting Pasta Bowl VI presented by SanDisk, in partnership with the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.
The entire 49ers roster, along with coaching staff, alumni, ownership, and executives joined the 49ers Foundation and top Silicon Valley executives for a night of food, fun and philanthropy at the Pasta Bowl, showing the importance of the work done off the field and in the community.
The Pasta Bowl began with a reception sponsored by U.S. Bank that included premier wine tasting, featuring 15 Napa Valley and Sonoma vintners, a beer garden hosted by Bud Light and Gordon Biersch, hors d’oeuvres, a raffle featuring extraordinary items such as a 49ers VIP Gameday Experience, balloon pop for prizes, 49ers airbrush tattoos, pizza making station for kids, Sourdough Sam, Niner Noise, and the Gold Rush cheerleaders.
For the sixth consecutive year, the event sold out bringing nearly 1,000 guests together in support of the San Francisco 49ers Foundation. This year, the 49ers Foundation gave $80,000 to two non-profit organizations, for a total of $160,000. Beneficiaries were Fresh Lifelines for Youth (FLY) and City Year San Jose/Silicon Valley.
During dinner, 49ers Owner/Chairman Dr. John York expressed his gratitude to the Pasta Bowl supporters, thanking them for their contributions to the 49ers Foundation’s mission of keeping kids “Safe, On Track and In School.” He also noted the 49ers organization’s overall commitment to serving the community.
“The number one priority for the 49ers is always to go out on the field on Sunday and win, but in addition to the hard work that the coaches and players put into success in football, they are incredibly committed to making a difference in the community. In 2011, 100 percent of our players participated in at least one community event,” he said.
“The players have a passion to be a part of the community, and to be good community citizens and good role models.”
Heading into the first day of training camp, Coach Jim Harbaugh spoke about the enthusiasm the players have to not only be the best on the field, but also off the field as well.
“Tonight’s a win-win for everybody. It’s a great way to get everybody together and even better that it’s for a wonderful cause,” Harbaugh said.
“All the players are here, not just all 90 reported, but also all 90 are here at the Pasta Bowl. So, they’re all taking it very seriously. They want to have the best Pasta Bowl of all time.”
Fans sat at tables of 20 with multiple celebrity servers and were treated to salad, pasta, wine and dessert. One of the most unique aspects of Pasta Bowl is the opportunity for guests to engage in conversation with their favorite players over dinner, as Carl Guardino, CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, describes.
“What we saw with the 49ers last year is that almost everything was possible. So, we’re coming with hope and with optimism that we’re going to have a great season on the field, but we’re also going to do great work off the field.”
The event benefits the community, but it also serves as a motivator for the players. Seeing the passion from the fans gives the players another reason to get amped up for the season.
“It’s great because the people are all so nice and supportive,” said 49ers running back
Pasta Bowl veteran and defensive tackle
“It’s great to be able to raise money for the different organizations in our community, raise money for schools and programs that are going to help our youth who are going to become our future,” Jean Francois said.
The San Francisco 49ers Foundation is the non-profit community funding extension of the San Francisco 49ers. Now in its 20th year, the 49ers Foundation supports development programs for underserved youth that keep them, “Safe, On Track, and In School.” The San Francisco 49ers are promoting RESPECT for schools and community by donating a significant portion of the foundation’s funding toward family violence prevention programs and activities that teach youth leadership and respect. Since 1992, the Foundation has donated over $18 million to support non-profits, including $2.4 million in 2011.
The 49ers are fortunate to have such generous sponsors who come together and enjoy participating in events such as the Pasta Bowl. Sanjay Mehrotra, CEO of SanDisk, expressed his enthusiasm. SanDisk has partnered with the 49ers on the event since its inception.
“Our partnership with the 49ers has been awesome, as SanDisk is very committed to supporting the causes of community, particularly when it comes to education and youth,” said Sanjay.
“We are very proud to be supporting the Pasta Bowl because our mission and the mission of the 49ers and their 49ers Foundation of supporting underprivileged youth and sponsoring special programs for education are perfectly aligned.”
As the evening wound down, guests were treated to a high energy performance from the Gold Rush as they enjoyed scrumptious cupcakes donated by Sprinkles.
The San Francisco 49ers Foundation and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group would like to thank the generous event sponsors including Presenting Sponsor, SanDisk; Reception Sponsor, U.S. Bank; Championship Sponsors AdvanTel, BlackRock, Turner and Visa; Pro Bowl Sponsors Devcon, FedEx, See’s Candies, and Splice; and table sponsors 95.7 The Game, AMD, Brocade, Franklin Templeton, Gordon Biersch, HNTB & GHD, Kaiser Permanente, M.E. Fox & Company, Michael and Mary Ellen Fox Family Foundation, Nelson Staffing, Palo Alto Medical Foundation, Rambus, San Francisco 49ers, Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara University, Silicon Valley Bank, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Splunk, SYNNEX, UnitedHealthcare and Optum, Wells Fargo and XO Communications,. Vintners who donated their time and their wine to the event included Baldacci Family Vineyards, Bell Wine Cellars, Black Coyote Wines, Boeschen, Carter Cellars, COHO Wines, David Family Wines, Gargiulo Vineyards, Mira Winery, Round Pond Estate, Tablas Creek Vineyard, and Trefethen. Product donors included American Airlines, Airship Ventures, Almaden Press, Bud Light, Coca-Cola, Gordon Biersch, Gallo Family Vineyards, M.E. Fox, Pizza Party Restaurant, SanDisk, See's Candies, Sonoma Tanning and Sprinkles Cupcakes. Thank you to all of the contributors who made the event a tremendous success!