Want a pizza topped with bacon and meatballs? Or how about a chicken schnitzel and fries? Or how about fries and pineapple?
They are all part of Fortina’s ongoing efforts to make children’s dreams come true through a partnership with Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley and the Make-A-Wish Connecticut Chapter. Since 2022, the local restaurant chain, with locations in Yonkers, Rye Brook, Armonk and Stamford, has offered monthly pizza specials created by young people suffering from serious illnesses, a net portion of which benefits Make-A-Wish chapters.
All pizzas are available for one month only. September features Ellie, 6, from Modena, with “Ellie’s Pizza,” made with marinara, parmesan, bacon and meatballs. In October, 10-year-old Olivia de Mahopac created a pie with marinara, basil, chicken cutlets, fries and onions called “Olivia Salad Pizza.”
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In December, you’ll find 11-year-old White Plains resident Khalinda’s “Loaded Pizza” with marinara, shredded mozzarella, fries, bacon, pineapple, breaded chicken and basil. And in February, Orianna, 15, of Bronxville, created “Orianna’s Pizza,” made with marinara, shredded mozzarella, pepperoni, mushrooms, roasted peppers and basil.
Other months, Connecticut kids’ pies such as “Eric’s Best Mystery Pizza,” in November, with marinara, mozzarella, pepperoni and bacon; “Reese’s Pieces” in January with marinara, shredded mozzarella, fries, chicken schnitzel, onions, roasted red peppers, basil and “The Camo-Wamo” in March with ricotta, fresh mozz, confit garlic, bacon, clams and basil.
Abraham Almanza, director of marketing and volunteer management for Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley, said the partnership “provides a unique opportunity for our children to participate in a fun activity that expands their dream experience.” It keeps the joy of a wish alive and helps them through their medical journey…it gives them some much needed hope.
Make-A-Wish Hudson Valley, based in Tarrytown, spans eight counties, including Delaware, Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester. Its mission is to create life-changing wishes for children with serious illnesses. Since its creation in 1986, it has granted the wishes of more than 3,200 children.
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The foundation is currently working on more than 260 pending wishes, with the average cost of a wish being between $7,500 and $10,000. Go to hudson.wish.org for more information or visit hudson.wish.org/fortina.
You can find Fortina locations and hours at fortinapizza.com.
Jeanne Muchnick covers food and dining. Click here to view his most recent articles and follow his latest culinary adventures on Instagram @lohud_food or via the lohudfood newsletter.
This article originally appeared in the Rockland/Westchester Journal News: Pizzas created by Make-A-Wish kids mean you can eat well and do good.