GARFIELD, NJ -- The 10th Annual “A Taste of Bergen” fundraiser was recently held here at The Venetian. Proceeds of the event will support the patients, long term care residents, veterans, and people in need served by New Bridge Medical Center in Paramus. 

The event featured 32 local restaurants, who donated their services to benefit the event, and was attended by over 350 guests, who sampled a wide range of food, desserts, beverages and entertainment. 

New Bridge Medical Center, formerly known as Bergen Regional Medical Center, is the largest hospital in New Jersey. “The work that’s done by the New Bridge Medical Center is very important to help us provide programs and services to the most vulnerable communities in Bergen County,” said Deborah Visconi, the President & CEO of New Bridge Medical Center. 

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Christopher Holland, an Executive Chef who grew up in Bergen County, was a featured guest. He is the 2017 Grand Champion of the Food Network show, “Chopped,” and a former client of New Bridge Medical Center. 

“I was addicted to painkillers and 10 years ago in February, I walked into Bergen Regional without a penny in my pocket, without anything, and no other way of getting help,” said Mr. Holland. “They took me in, they didn’t charge me a penny, and they put me on the road to sobriety, and I’ve been sober ever since.” 

“To stay sober, you have to help other people, you have to give back to the community, you have to be grateful for what you have,” Mr. Holland continued. “I have to remember the guy that walked into Bergen Regional 10 years ago. If I don’t remember him, then I might become him again. So doing things like this helps me to remember that guy, and helps me give back to people who helped me when I needed it.”