Written by Turron Davenport
Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith hosted his 2nd Annual Celebrity Waiter Night at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse and Havana Club on Tuesday. The event was presented by Northwestern Mutual. All proceeds from the event will benefit The Torrey Smith Foundation with the goal of providing educational support to low income children throughout the Maryland area. Those who bought tickets to the event were able to enjoy an elegant evening that began with delicious appetizers followed by a delightful meal and fine wine, all of which was served by Torrey Smith and some of his Ravens teammates.
Torrey was joined by his teammates which included: Brandon Trawick, Marlon Brown, Justin Tucker, Steve Smith Sr., Haloti Ngata, Kamar Aiken and Tyrod Taylor. The event also featured a competitive live auction along with a silent auction in which those in attendance were able to place bids on Ravens autographed memorabilia, exotic trips and tour packages. One of the prizes was a six day safari in Africa which sold for $4,000. Another bidder paid $2,100 for the opportunity to dine with Torrey Smith and his wife Chanel at Jimmy’s Seafood in Baltimore. Torrey Smith’s autographed jersey was a hot item at the live auction as aggressive bidders went back and forth until the jersey sold for $3,200. The event raised a total of $130,000 to support the Torrey Smith Foundation. The event was surely a huge success.
Giving back to the community is something that Torrey Smith takes seriously. He decided to establish the Torrey Smith Foundation as soon as he was drafted by the Ravens. The Celebrity Waiter Night is one of the foundation’s biggest events. “This foundation is really important to my wife and me,” Smith continued; “Celebrity Waiter Night is our biggest fundraiser of the year. This is where we raise a lot of the money that allows us to do what we do in the community. The more money you raise, the more people you can help. We’re excited. This is more intimate because the people get to see us beyond the helmet. We get to serve them food and mingle with them a little bit. It means a lot that they come out and support my foundation. It’s more than just a quick high and bye, we all really enjoy it. We can bond with the people at the tables, learn more about them, it’s great.”
The work that the foundation does takes on a special meaning to Torrey Smith. “I know exactly what it’s like to have a family that needs the help. The people that we are helping out through our foundation, my family was one that needed it. These families are struggling. Their parents are working hard to make ends meet. The same way it was for my mom. To be able to help people and just enhance our youths, I truly appreciate it because I can from the same situation.”
Torrey is strongly supported by his wife Chanel a former track runner at the University of Maryland. Chanel was equally excited and talked about some of the big things coming up for the foundation. “This is our second year doing this event. We inherited this event from Matt Birk. Last year it was a big success and we were able to put in place a lot of our programs as a result. We have a lot of big plans. We want to start our first mentoring camp this year which will lead to a mentoring program so that’s our focus this year. We are still going to do Thanksgiving drives along with our Christmas giveaways and all of that but the mentoring programs are our big events this year. We both went to school in Maryland so we are embedded within in this area. We plan on making this our home for a while so we are emotionally invested this area. We want to do anything that we can to reach the youth. We both come from backgrounds where we needed a little help. If it wasn’t for a lot of the people who offered a hand to us, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”
For more information about the Torrey Smith Foundation and how you can help them impact the youth in the Maryland area, please visit their website:
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