Alumni help ‘Casablanca’ bring romance to Caritas

Caritas 2011 at the University of St. Francis will feature the theme “Casablanca,” recreating the drama and romance of the 1942 film.

Ed & Cheryl Jarot of Plainfield are chairpersons of the event on Jan. 29. Caritas, in its 54th year, is one of the oldest black tie events in the region. The event has raised more than $3 million to fund scholarships and programs at the University of St. Francis. Caritas features gourmet cuisine, top entertainment, a raffle and the university’s own online auction of luxury items. Tables and individual tickets are available. Tickets are $275 per person for the event which is in the university’s Recreation Center. For sponsorships, tickets or information, visit or call (815) 740-3826. Event and raffle tickets can be purchased online.

Many will remember the classic film “Casablanca,” starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman and set in the Moroccan City of Casablanca. It is the story of a man who must choose between his love for a woman and helping her and her resistance leader husband escape to continue the fight against the Nazis. The Jarots plan to recreate the ambience of Rick’s Café through décor, music and other special touches. ’Casablanca’ has always been one of our favorite films and we can see it coming to life to be enjoyed at Caritas 2011,” said Cheryl Jarot.

“Caritas is made possible by the work of a creative committee that works almost year-round to plan and execute this very spectacular event for the University of St. Francis. Some of the committee members are veterans and a few are new this year, but we have a great time working together,” said Ed Jarot. The Jarots have served on the Caritas Committee for seven years.

The 2011 Caritas Committee includes Eric and Ruth Bass of Channahon; Jay and Lori Bergman of Joliet; Scott, Jr. and Debra Crowther of Shorewood; Jeff and Shannon Jarot of Plainfield; Mukund and Shirin Komanduri of Aurora; Al, Jr. and Tammy Paolucci of Shorewood; Tyler and Stephanie Qualio of Shorewood; Jason and Lexi Schladenhauffen of Shorewood; Jeff and Shannon Serr of Shorewood; and Rod & Renee Tonelli of Shorewood. The Paoluccis, Stephanie Qualio and Lexi Schladenhauffen are alumni of the University of St. Francis.