Make a gift to Lighting the Way and enjoy our gift to you - an invitation to one or more Spark Sessions, taking place in the first two weeks of May. Attend yourself, or gift an invitation to a friend! (If you can't make it to the live session, no worries -  you can access the recording for thirty days.)

$1,000+ gift      6 invitations to keep or share

$500 gift          4 invitations to keep or share

$150 gift           2 invitations to keep or share 


Want to donate another amount? Use the custom donation section on the homepage to make a gift of any amount you wish, and receive an invitation to 1 Spark session of your choice. Every gift makes a difference - no amount is too small!


2021 Spark Session offerings:


Cooking demonstration with Chef Eric Yost '98
Wednesday, May 5 at 7:30 p.m.


Join Chef Eric Yost as he demonstrates how to make his famous Lamb Bolognese from the menu of his restaurant, Suburban Restaurant & Beer Garden in Exton. Eric has cooked in commercial kitchens around the US and opened a few of his own. He also served as a Personal Chef to a world renowned movie director in the Philadelphia area! Eric opened Suburban Restaurant Beer & Beer Garden in 2017 and finds his inspiration using locally sourced foods grown using sustainable methods.


From Intention to Implementation to Completion! Cool Tools to Truly Execute Tasks with Sarah Ward
Thursday, May 13 at 7:30 p.m.

We know what we want to achieve, we somewhat know what we need to do to get there, but sometimes we can't seem to get momentum going and shift from intention to action. Beat procrastination, motivation and distraction challenges and learn cool planning and time tools to truly go from intention to action to completion! Sarah Ward, M.S., CCC/SLP is an internationally recognized authority on executive function. Through seminars and workshops on programs and strategies she has developed with her co-director of Cognitive Connections, Kristen Jacobsen, Sarah has presented to and consulted with over 1600 public and private schools all over the world. Their 360 Thinking Executive Function Program received the Innovative Promising Practices Award from the National Organization CHADD.


Mind Full or Mindful? Decluttering Our Busy Minds
Monday, May 10 at 7:00 p.m.


Join inspirational teacher and professional speaker, Harriet Stein, as she reviews how to easily and quickly develop a mindfulness practice to enable you to increase your performance, decrease your stress, and let you sleep at night. 
Harriet credits her advanced Mindfulness training, interwoven with her background as a Registered Nurse and her Master of Science degree in Health Administration, as the foundation to the compassion and purpose she brings to her Mindfulness teaching and practice. During Harriet's tenure at Johnson & Johnson, she used her expertise to directly instruct more than 5,000 worldwide employees on the practice of Mindfulness through engaging presentations. Her company, Big Toe in the Water, just celebrated its ten year anniversary!


Healthy Eating and your Child
Monday, May 3 at 7:00 p.m.


Join dietitian and fitness expert, Kathleen Ruggeri, as she discusses the ups and downs of trying to raise healthy children as they grow, reasons for picky eating, tips to overcome this challenge and encourage eating from all food groups, fueling teens for athletics and steps to get you started on a happier dinnertime as a family.

Kathleen is a registered dietitian and has helped many different populations combat chronic diseases like hypertension, celiac disease, and diabetes through nutrition during her time at the Nutrition & Dietetic department at Chester County Hospital. She currently partners with two local medical practices: CMMD PRO+ACTIVE with Christine Meyer MD, and RENEW MEDICAL with Karl Zimmerman in addition to running her own business, Harvest Nutrition.


Making your vegetables work for you: Seed to fork tips from a professional chef-teacher-grower                    Wednesday, May 12 at 7:00 p.m.


Outdoor Seed Sowing | Harvesting and Storing Vegetables | The "Long & Short" of Vegetable Preparation
Chuck Ziccardi is the father of a DV senior and Chef/Teaching Professor at Drexel University's Department of Food and Hospitality Management. Chef Z has 15 years experience in the food service industry, and 20 years in academics at Drexel  teaching a wide variety of courses in culinary arts and hospitality management. He specializes in classical Italian cuisine, sustainability and kitchen gardening and maintains the program's 20 raised vegetable beds.


Debbie Beer

Spring on the Wing: The spectacle of bird migration
Tuesday, May 4 at 7:00 p.m.

Learn how to recognize many delightful species of migratory birds which pass through and nest in the Delaware Valley, after making a challenging journey of hundreds or even thousands of miles from their overwintering spots. Your backyard, or a nearby park or preserve, are wonderful places to observe a colorful assortment of warblers, thrushes, orioles, tanagers, flycatchers, waterfowl, swallows, shorebirds and more. Learn how to make sure these annual visitors have the natural resources they need to sustain their efforts - insects, berries, seeds, clean water, and healthy habitats.

Debbie Beer is the Director of Volunteer Engagement for Natural Lands and an avid birder for more than 20 years. She's been a Natural Lands member since 2003, supporting the mission to save open space, care for nature, and connect people to the outdoors. In 2013, she joined Natural Lands staff to manage volunteers - some of the most wonderful people! Debbie has travelled to amazing places for birds, including Africa, India, Brazil and beyond. Locally, John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia is a favorite patch, along with many of Natural Lands' 44 properties. She's active in multiple bird conservation initiatives and enjoys sharing her passion with others.


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How to attend Spark Sessions: Invitations to Spark Sessions are sent to donors who make a gift of any amount to our Lighting the Way event. They are our way of thanking donors for their generosity. Gifts made at certain levels come with a certain number of invitations; scroll to the top of this page for details.