For the past few weeks, we have been highlighting various aspects of what to expect at this year's Stanbridge Spring Gala—Saturday, March 9th at Domenico Winery. Still, the phrase "fundraising gala dinner" might have negative connotations for some people, so allow us to highlight a few things that this year's Stanbridge Spring Gala is not:
• There will not be a rubber chicken dinner. Ugh. We've all been there. A perfectly good celebration ruined by a bland slab of flavorless meat or congealed pasta. Nothing worse than spending the dinner hour pushing peas around your plate and counting down the minutes until you can hit the In-N-Out drive thru on the way home. Which is why we're offering a full complement of delicious appetizers and entrees at this year's gala. From seafood and salads, to carved meats, eggplant parmesan, and the mashed potato bar, come hungry and leave happy!
• There will not be an endless silent auction. The Stanbridge gala is a chance to socialize and party with other attendees, not stare at tables of gift baskets and bid sheets all night long. While we will still have some great prizes that you can purchase tickets to win throughout the night—a Hawaiian timeshare; Giants box seats; a Wine Club membership; a LEGO/Maker's Faire package—we don't want guests to anxiously hover over auction items from the time you arrive. We want you to mix, mingle, have fun and dance! And speaking of dancing...
• It will not be amateur hour on the bandstand. We won't be piping-in muzak, clumsily shuffling through someone's iPod playlist, or hosting a ragtag rent-a-band that only covers 80's Billy Joel. For this year's gala—by popular demand—we're bringing back jazz vocalist Jesse Foster and his personally-selected group of ensemble musicians who have decades of combined experience playing with Grammy-winning headliners all over the world. They'll be bringing da noise and da funk, as well as da jazz, soul, pop, R&B, and groove, so bring your best moves and boogie shoes—the dance floor will be open all night.
• There will not be a long-winded boring speaker. Between band sets, our resident high school science teacher/improv comic Jay Huston will be the evening's emcee to keep things flowing and the energy up. For our post-dinner program centerpiece, we're excited to have counselor James Warren once again performing an original song, and we are especially thrilled to announce that this year's gala will feature the world premiere of our new Stanbridge video, shot on campus earlier this fall. While the fundraising portion of the evening is a critical means to support all of our Stanbridge students, the last thing we want is for someone to drone on endlessly as you slip into a food coma, so we'll keep things fun, lively, and brief so you can raise your paddles and then get back to raising the roof.
• The gala is not a SPA meeting. It's a party! Domenico's newly-renovated tasting room is even more spacious than last year (construction is done!), and we'll be hosting an open bar all night with their award-winning wines, a selection of beers, and top-shelf mixed drinks, too (not to mention soft drinks, coffee, and tea). Along with the food, drinks, and music, the evening will feature current and alumni Stanbridge parents, staff, trustees, outside donors and friends. We've designed the gala to be a fun, adults night out to socialize with the extended Stanbridge community, but also a perfect opportunity to invite your friends and neighbors to a one-of-a-kind event that celebrates the school that means so much to us.
• It's not a party without you! Now that you have a better sense of what the gala is and what the gala is not, we hope you'll see for yourself and join us at the party on Saturday March 9th. Our RSVP deadline is this Friday, February 15, so time is running out to secure your seats. You can purchase tickets or make a donation online using your credit/debit card, or pay by cash or check in the main office. If you plan to attend but can't pay until later, simply complete the RSVP form on our gala webpage or complete the form in the office by Friday (payment in-full is due by March 9). If you have any gala questions, please don't hesitate to contact our Director of Advancement, Chris Myers, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, thanks to everyone who has already purchased their ticket/tickets or made a pre-event donation. This is shaping-up to be our biggest gala ever—hope to see you there!