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The Mercantile Library's Half-Baked Virtual Gala Promises a Whole Lot of Fun

For the last two years, the Mercantile Library’s annual Niehoff Lecture brought together 900 people for a night of reprieve from the mundane to support the literary arts. Hosting Margaret Atwood and Bob Woodward the last two years, the Niehoff Lecture has been known for good food, sharply dressed patrons, and stimulating talks from well-renowned authors. This year, The Mercantile Library is opting to bring this lecture to Cincinnati virtually with the Half-Baked Virtual Gala.

This year’s speaker is New York Times Bestseller Curtis Sittenfeld, author of American Wife, Eligible, and Rodham, who has a great sense of humor and is writing a brand new story specifically for the event. If that’s not enough of a sell, the tickets to the virtual event also include a four-course meal from one of these spectacular restaurants: Abigail Street, Jean-Robert’s Table, Via Vite, Salazar, or Sotto.

Held on Saturday, November 7th from 7:00 PM EST-9:30 PM EST, the Half-Baked Gala will be held virtually to raise funds for the library and celebrate literature. With the option of wearing black-tie or pajamas, those who wish to attend the virtual gala need only to purchase tickets online through the library’s website. Participants are notified via email as to where and when to pick up your “half-baked” dinner, and also how to access the event.

The Mercantile Library’s Director, John Faherty, hopes to use the gala not only to support the library, but also local restaurants within the community that have been affected by the pandemic.

“We wanted to celebrate great writing. And frankly, this has been a tough year financially. The Half-Baked Gala will help us, and it will help our friends in the restaurant industry. Plus it will be a lot of fun and the food will be amazing," Faherty says.

The gala will give the members of the Cincinnati area the opportunity to support the library and offer a good time to those seeking a night of escape, good food, and great literature. See the information below to purchase your tickets today.


Tickets: Purchase them here by Friday, October 30, Or call 513-621-0717.

Prices: $175 Mercantile Members, $200 non-members

Food: Restaurants will be assigned randomly, and evenly, although tickets purchased together will be from the same place.