Sweet-Tooths and Sweethearts

Local Group Throws Cupcake-Crazy Charity Dating Auction

Paku Daoust-Cloutier

Easter is just around the corner—a fact that we’re reminded of every day as candy chicks and chocolate bunnies dominate dollar stores, supermarkets and pharmacies around the city.

But for those uninterested in traditional celebrations, there’s an evening for you.

Promising to raise your heartbeat as much as your blood sugar, Cupcakes, Mocktails and Dates, hosted by the Montreal MOBilizers, hopes to be a fun and charitable way to kick off Easter weekend.

As the name implies, the fundraiser will feature gourmet food, fancy drinks and an opportunity to bid on a date. Proceeds will benefit the Clean Water Initiative, a non-profit organization that aims to support developing communities around the world.

Although last year’s event was hosted at a gallery, this year it’s being held at Mainline Theatre—in a continuation of their traditional combination of arts and charity.

The Montreal MOBilizers have been affiliated with the Adopt a Village program for three years. The two share a goal of breaking the poverty cycle and empowering communities worldwide to support themselves in the long term.

It began by assisting schools that were struck by Haiti’s devastating earthquakes; this year’s proceeds are going towards the Clean Water Initiative.

“The program hopes to provide 100,000 people in marginalized communities around the world with clean water,” said Thusiga Inderanathan, one of the MOBilizers’ organizers.

It’s no secret that free food is a tried-and-true way to lure students to events. Still, there is something about cupcakes that makes them irresistible—especially when they are gourmet and unlimited.

Last year’s selection ranged from chocolate to rainbow with a range of frostings, toppings and sizes. The inevitable sugar rush will no doubt have the participants amped up in time for the dating auction.

The Easter Bunny is being extra generous this year, and is opening up the opportunity for partygoers to bid for a date with one of the lovely MOBilizers. The brave participants are putting their hearts on the line to benefit developing third-world communities.

Also featured in the event are performances by local Montreal musicians to help keep the energy levels high.

Last year’s Cupcakes, Mocktails and Dates raised $2,000 for initiatives in Terre Cassée, Haiti, setting an ambitious bar for this year.

The goal is anything but daunting to an organization that labels itself as “shamelessly idealistic.” One of the MOBilizers’ main goals is to motivate and inspire Montreal’s youth population, said Inderanathan. They are a tight-knit group consisting of thirty individuals trying an unorthodox way of raising money.

“Youth is so important for the future that we need to be as unique and optimistic as possible,” she said.

For her, this means promoting awareness to the rest of the community not directly involved with the MOBilizers. The cupcake-themed dating auction is an example of their creativity in boosting awareness, and it’s clear that if anyone knows how to motivate youth, it’s youth.

With a population attracted to all things fringe, the clear choice is Mainline, a.k.a. “Indie theatre’s home on The Main.” While charity events are not the Mainline Theatre’s focus, their participation is due to more than simply an opening in the schedule.

“Independent theatre relies on the support of the community to operate, so it seems fitting to give something back,” said Amy Blackmore, the director of Mainline.

While there is certainly an art to getting people to reach into their pockets, and perhaps even more to making it fun, creativity is key.

Pairing up with a refreshing arts venue like Mainline certainly attracts the bidders they’re looking for. With Blackmore’s support, the MOBilizers expect the event to draw a full house—especially considering there are unlimited cupcakes involved.

Cupcakes, Mocktails and Dates / March 29 / Mainline Theatre (3997 St. Laurent Blvd.) / 7:00 p.m. / $10 regular, $5 “Sorry I can’t come”