Danny Dragone of Carlo’s Bakery in Hoboken, NJ and TLC’s Cake Boss fame announced in July that he would shave his mustache for the first time in over 30 years, but only if he was able to raise $25,000 for Make-A-Wish New Jersey. Buddy Valastro, the Cake Boss himself, and Ralph Attanasia of Carlo’s Bakery and TLC’s Cake Boss, agreed to perform the ceremonial shave at a special event held on August 9th, at the Samuel & Josephine Plumeri Wishing Place in Monroe Township, home of Make-A-Wish New Jersey.
Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.
The campaign took off and over the course of a few short weeks, Danny and the Carlo’s Bakery team raised over $18,000. On August 9th, invited guests and wish families gathered at the Make-A-Wish castle in Monroe Township for a day of carnival-like entertainment including a balloon artist, a stilt-walker, musical entertainment from the barbershop quartet Twisted Mustache, popcorn from a classic popcorn machine provided by Party Perfect, and of course, pastries and sweet treats by the hundreds, donated by none other than Carlo’s Bakery. Evil Fades Barbershop of Millstone, NJ also supported the event by donating an old-fashioned barber chair and grooming products for the big event.
Guests then gathered in the Bolte Family Theater for an exciting program and the moment they all had been waiting for. Throughout the ceremony, hosted by Make-A-Wish New Jersey President & CEO Tom Weatherall, contributions continued to roll in from audience members and the online community watching via live broadcast. Generous gifts made by longtime Make-A-Wish sponsors and supporters Fedway Associates, Make-A-Wish New Jersey Board Chair Francis X. Bolte, and Buddy Valastro himself brought the campaign to a staggering total of $55,000.
And then, off came the mustache.
“Danny has had that mustache for over 30 years, so it was a big deal when he said he was willing to shave it off," shared Buddy Valastro. "But he wasn’t going to do it for a bet or for just any reason. He said he’d shave, but he wanted to do it for Make-A-Wish, the kids."
Buddy Valastro, Danny Dragone, Ralph Attanasia and Carlo’s Bakery are no strangers to the power of a wish. Since the first wish to bake a cake with Buddy was granted in 2010, dozens of children from around the world have experienced the power of a wish with the Carlo’s Bakery family.
“Make-A-Wish was founded by a group of volunteers on the idea that as a community, we can change lives,” stated Tom Weatherall, President & Chief Executive Officer for Make-A-Wish New Jersey. “Danny, Buddy, Ralph and the entire Carlo’s Bakery family have shown us that they believe in our seemingly simple, but oh-so-powerful mission. We cannot thank them enough for their friendship and their dedication to our wish kids!”
Last year, Make-A-Wish New Jersey granted 483 wishes to local children with life-threatening medical conditions, and will grant over 500 wishes this year. The average cost of a wish in New Jersey is $10,000. Thanks to Danny’s efforts and the support of the community, Make-A-Wish New Jersey will continue to reach more eligible children and make their wishes come true.
To support the Danny Shaves for Wishes campaign, visit wish.org/dannyshaves.