After working 14 hours in the kitchen and setting his alarm for 5am cycling training, you would hope Joondalup Resort executive chef Phil Waldron could get a good night’s sleep.
Add organising a 450-seat gala dinner with wife Suzanne for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia into the mix and Waldron confessed he sometimes ran on empty.
“Literally every minute of our day is taken up by sharing ways to make this event even better,” laughed Suzanne, his partner of 20 years.
“We are walking past each other going from the shower to the bedroom saying ‘I just thought of this idea’, or ‘Oh, you know what we could do’.
“I am coming up with ideas in the middle of the night. I try not to wake him but I might be with all the tossing and turning.”
After completing the Prostate Active charity ride from Perth to Margaret River with friend and event founder Jeremy Watkins in 2014, Phil decided to use his cooking and event skills to launch the gala dinner A Ball on a Bike on August 25 at Joondalup Resort.
He said he felt “incredibly grateful” to call on his connections to contribute to the inaugural event.
“By meeting people who have been through it themselves, or have lost someone to prostate cancer, you become very aware of how serious it is,” he said. “It pushed me to use the opportunities I have to do something. We just want to get the word out there and help put prostate cancer on the map.”
Suzanne said she and her husband had “fallen in love” with organising events that were crazy and energetic yet ultimately meaningful.
“It will be a huge surprise as soon as people walk into the room,” she said.
“Our whole idea is to give giving people a fun experience with meaning. We want our guests to actually feel different when they leave.”
Phil said he had designed the menu to reflect the charity ride, which will be held again two weeks after the gala dinner.
“We stop at a pie shop on the way to Bunbury for lunch on the first day of the ride, so our second course will be a fancy interpretation of that,” he said.
“Everyone carb loads the night before the second day, so there will be a pasta course. And then we’re going to finish off with a Margaret River chocolate dessert from Piari & Co chef Blair Allen.”
Ball on a Bike earlybird ticket sales finish on June 30.