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Ante Up for Autism Headed to Town

On Saturday, Sept. 22, special celebrities and sport stars will support autism with Southern California’s elite at at the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel.

Here is your chance to gamble for a great cause with celebrities, top athletes and professional poker players at Talk About Curing Autism's “ANTE UP FOR AUTISM” fundraising event. The Gala and Casino Night will benefit TACA, a national non-profit organization with a mission to educate, empower and provide support to families affected by autism. 

On Saturday, Sept. 22, starting at 5 p.m., special celebrities and sport stars will support autism with Southern California’s elite. Located at the Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, the event will offer a VIP red carpet entrance, cocktails, tournament poker, live and silent auction and tips from poker stars. 

Actor Jonathon Schaech and singer Kate Voegele (co-hosts of this year’s event) will be on hand and have supported TACA for years. Schaech is most known for his portrayal of the lead singer in the band, The Wonders, in Tom Hank's That Thing You Do. His recent credits include number one box office hits Takers, Quarantine, and Prom Night. He just finished filming the drama Hidden Moon opposite Wes Bentley, the thriller Dark Circles and the action film, The Phantom starring Ed Harris and David Duchovny. 

Voegele is a full-time singer-songwriter and part-time actress. She scored the part as the spunky Mia on the popular teen drama “One Tree Hill.”  Voegele’s MySpace Record debut, “Don't Look Away,” sold close to a quarter million copies, climbed to No. 4 on the iTunes chart and sent Voegele upstream to Interscope (which has a distribution partnership with MySpace). 

Her second album "A Fine Mess," produced by Mike Elizando, skyrocketed to number 10 overall on the billboard charts its debut week. The album has sold 150,000 copies to date. Voegele released her third album, "Gravity Happens" in early 2011.

In addition to Schaech and Voegele, confirmed celebrity guests include: Reality TV star Alexis Bellino of The Real Housewives of OC, actor Todd Stashwick, actress Shanna Moakler, actress/TV host Nicky Whelan, actor Nicholas Gonzalez, actor Ronnie Blevins, actor/producer David Deluise and actor/professional poker player Joseph Reitman.

Past special guests included Lance Armstrong, Tony Hawk, actress Amber Lancaster, actor Jacob Vargas, actor Clifton Collins Jr., Deal or No Deal model Leyla Milani, Ryan Sheckler (professional skateboarder), Gretchen Bleiler (professional snowboarder - 2010 X Games Superpipe Gold Medalist), Kerry Walsh (Olympic gold medal winner - beach volleyball), Casey Jennings (professional beach volleyball player), Michelle Lau (poker pro), David Mosikian (poker pro) and Joe Sebok (poker pro).

Last year’s event raised more than $250,000 benefiting families across the United States touched by autism.  Tickets are on sale now at anteupforautism.org.

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