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Real Men Cook Events Coming To Hales Franciscan, West Side, Beverly

 Hadiya Pendleton's dad, Nathaniel Pendleton, was guest of honor and top chef at the 24th Annual Real Men Cook fest. Hadiya Pendleton’s dad, Nathaniel Pendleton, was guest of honor and top chef at the 24th Annual Real Men Cook fest. View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Darryl Holliday

WOODLAWN— Hales Franciscan High School will host its second annual Real Men Cook event on Sunday for Father’s Day.

Supporters of the school and alumni will come together to grill and prepare food like ribs and other dishes. There will be tastings from 3-6 p.m. at the school, 4930 S. Cottage Grove Ave. The community is invited to join in the celebration of fathers and father-figures.

The school’s acting president, Anthony (Taifa) Daniels–Halisi, will use the occasion to prepare for fall enrollment and shine a light on the school and its mission.
The event will continue Real Men Charities’ tradition of promoting health and wellness, prevention and awareness for families and children.

The Hales Franciscan and Real Men Charities partnership supports the mission of both organizations, which are devoted to cultivating the character of young African-American men and uplifting the family, organizers said.
Yvette Moyo and Kofi Moyo, co-founders of Real Men Cook, said that last year’s celebration was a phenomenal success, crediting Hales Franciscan’s mission of cultivating, educating and uplifting African-American males. They said they’re expecting a huge turnout on Sunday.
“Real Men Cook will create an opportunity to feature the young men at Hales Franciscan, the alumni and our rich history,” said Daniels-Halisi. “Hales Franciscan is re-opening as a males-only school after a year of restructuring while the school was closed. We look forward to showcasing the school, recruiting new students and generating a new energy as we prepare to open our doors in the fall. Hales Franciscan is grateful to Real Men Cook for providing a forum for our school while serving the community and spotlighting the family on Father’s Day and everyday.”
The event marks the launch of a partnership between Hales Franciscan High School and Real Men Charities, which presents Real Men Cook. 

Through the partnership, the two organizations will work together year-round through a mentoring program, said Real Men Charities Executive Director Ayinde Cartman.

“The initiative begins at the Father’s Day Celebration as Hales Franciscan students will be matched with professionals in their area of interest,” he said. “The mentor and mentee will engage one another at the event, and continue to connect throughout the year.”

Since Real Men Cook was founded 27 years ago, the annual event has attracted churches, actors, musicians, elected officials and community advocates from across the nation, including then state Sen. Barack Obama.

Lead sponsors of Real Men Cook 2017 are ComEd and NextLevel Health. Supporting sponsors are University of Chicago Medicine, and Black Chicago Eats. For more information, log on to

There will be four other locations open to the public:

— BBF Family Services, Douglas Park Fieldhouse, 1401 S. Sacramento, 11 a.m. -2 p.m. The event is free to the public, but registration is required at is encouraged.

 — Dan Ryan Woods, Hosted by Keith Martin, Sr.- Organization: D.A.D.D.Y (Developing A Dedicated Driven Youth) 3-6 p.m.

— Dolton Park District’s Early Learning Center,  729 Engle Street, Dolton, Hosted by Fathers and Blessings, 11 a.m. -7p.m.

— Trinity United Church of Christ, 1276 W. 20th Ave., Gary, IN, Hosted by Rev. John Jackson, 3– 7p.m.

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