UWS Restaurant Serves Up Hot Firemen for a Good Cause

By Leslie Albrecht on April 26, 2012 5:00pm 

UPPER WEST SIDE — Hero hunks are on the menu at Nonna.

The Italian eatery at 520 Columbus Ave. and Firehouse Tavern are hosting a series of steamy benefit events this weekend to raise money for Jacobi Hospital's burn unit.

At Nonna, firefighter fans can pay $75 for a private meet and greet with the 13 hunks featured in the 2013 New York City firefighters calendar as well as one from the 2014 edition, followed by a four-course dinner on Saturday.

At Firehouse Tavern — a bar inside a onetime fire station at 522 Columbus Ave. — guests can pay $25 to mingle with the firefighters at a cocktail reception.

Guests at both events get a free calendar. All profits from Saturday's events go to Jacobi's burn unit, as do 15 percent of the proceeds from sales of the $15.95 calendar.

The shirtless firefighters featured in the calendar are picked for their handsome looks and hard bodies. But the photographer, Alan "Battman" Batt, also tries to select subjects who have a personal connection to the calendar's cause, said Christina Oden, director of operations at The Restaurant Group, which owns Nonna and Firehouse Tavern.

Some of the Bravest come from families with a long history of firefighting and some have had personal experience with burns, Oden said.

"It's a proud honor for the guys to be on the calendar because they're really giving back,"  Oden said.

The hunky calendar, now in its 17th year, has raised at least $200,000 for charity over the years, Oden said.

For ladies who are wondering, most of the firefighters who posed for the calendar are single, Oden said.

To buy tickets, go to the Nonna Restaurant or Firehouse Tavern website.

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