The cast of Southern Charm is using their hometown fame for good. They will honor the victims of the June 17 shooting at the Emanuel AME in Charleston at a benefit dinner on July 19, with all of the proceeds going to the AME Fund.
J.D. Madison, who is hosting the get-together at his restaurant Sermet's Downtown, previewed the event for the Daily Dish. The night will include dinner, an open bar, and entertainment from the Joe Clarke Band and Charlton Singleton. "Firstly, I wanted to wait a month before considering an event. I think it is time now for a 'feel good' celebration in true Charleston Style," he said. "Our staff was so excited when we started putting this together, and they are all generously donating their time and money for the evening. We have some of the most well-known and respected musicians in Charleston donating their time and heartfelt performances in tribute. Our Chef du Cuisine John Boulanger and Executive Chef Sermet Aslan have put together a menu befitting their culinary art form. And yes, some cast members of Southern Charm will be here to help greet and promote the event. Everybody wants to help and do their part. This isn't about us. We all want to help raise money for these families."
Among those castmates set to appear are Shep Rose, Danni Baird, Landon Clements, Kathryn Dennis, Cameran Eubanks, Thomas Ravenel, K. Cooper Ray, and Jennifer Snowden. "It's another way to raise money for the victims’ families, of course there's no way we can ever know how these families feel or bring back their loved ones, but we'll try to help ease the pain in any way possible," Shep said, adding, "In my opinion Charleston has really banded together following the tragedy. It's been amazing to see people showing their sympathy and support."
While the city is still recovering from the tragedy, the crew shed light on the mood in Charleston since the incident, which left nine dead. "The mood in Charleston has been very somber," Landon shared. "But at the same time it has been remarkable watching the community come together." She added, "Yes I think everyone, in their own way, is recovering but like any wound it's going to take some time to heal."
In fact, this dinner is only the latest way that Charleston's residents have shown support for their city. "Almost every business in one way or another has helped out," Landon noted. "Restaurants donated food to the officers that were working around the clock. T-Shirts and other things were made to help raise funds. Also, the city and state came together very quickly to amend laws so that the Confederate flag could be taken down almost immediately. The city's reaction to everything has, in my humble option, been a class act. As heartbreaking as this tragedy is I have never been more proud to call Charleston home."
J.D. notes that even for those who can't make it to Sunday's dinner, there are ways for others to get involved. "First and foremost, say a prayer for those hurting the most," he said. "There are several funds if you can help in that way. If you have time to spare, think how you can help create unity where you live. We honor these families by being better people."