Options For All to host virtual gala ‘Bow Ties & Sandals’ featuring Chef Brian Malarkey


Options For All, a nonprofit organization that empowers individuals living with intellectual and developmental disabilities to gain independence and live their best lives, will be hosting a virtual gala titled, “Bow Ties & Sandals,” on Saturday, Aug. 29 at 6 p.m. via Zoom.

Unique from other virtual events, guests of Bow Ties & Sandals 2020 ( will enjoy their choice of three gourmet, four-course meals prepared by Top Chef All-Stars Finalist Brian Malarkey. They will also have the opportunity to savor small production wines, as well as a signature cocktail – all delivered directly to their front door.

The program will include live music and entertainment, a live interview with Malarkey, a virtual toast led by Herb & Wood’s Sommelier and Mixologist Brandon Lervold, who will also discuss the wine pairings. Plus, surprise celebrity guest appearances and exciting live auction items.

Chef Malarkey has recruited approximately 30 staff members to create and prepare the food and approximately 100 volunteer drivers that will hand deliver the dinner and drink selections to gala guests ahead of the event using customized insulated totes. The prolific chef will also appear live during the event and “drop-in” on sponsored virtual tables for intimate conversations with guests. The gala will also feature additional celebrity guest appearances and a live auction hosted by Frank Kitchen.

“I’ve never done anything like this before and it’s going to be top-notch. All of you are my guests and I will be your chef,” said Malarkey. “Let’s have a great time and make some money for this amazing cause.”

Funds raised during the gala will help provide access for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to actively engage in customized virtual programs. Options for All has refused to allow COVID-19 to shut down the vital development programs its clients need, and has continued to provide services by developing new innovative virtual programs. The proceeds from this gala will also allow Options For All staff to continue delivering in-person services to the numerous clients who are classified as essential workers.

Founded in 1985, Options For All creates unique opportunities which give individuals more options for living their lives to the fullest, including an incredibly impressive Film & Media Studies program that provides the education and experience necessary to land jobs within the industry. While the organization is headquartered in San Diego, Options For All works with individuals in San Bernardino, Riverside, San Diego, Santa Clara, and Santa Cruz Counties.

“We value the aspirations and potential in the lives of persons living with intellectual and developmental disabilities. With the help of our community, we can ensure that this population is given an equal opportunity to thrive and pursue their dreams,” said Ken Barnes, CEO of Options for All. Barnes, a noted foodie, came up with the idea for the gala. “I wanted to create a culinary event that would be different. Something fun for people to enjoy at home while engaged with the gala and the mission of the organization. “

For more information and to purchase tickets, guests are encouraged to visit Guests will have two options when purchasing tickets: $175 for gala access and a gourmet 4-course meal, or $75 for gala access only. Virtual tables of eight and various sponsorship opportunities are also available. For more information, contact Brian Zotti at or by fax at (858) 565-9875.