Quail Valley concludes fruitful week-long fundraiser with Gala

VERO BEACH — The end of an action-packed week, bursting with fundraising events and good-natured competitions, reached its crescendo at the Ninth Annual Quail Valley Charity Cup Grand Gala Cocktail Buffet, Auction and Awards Night.  Supporters, participants and non-profit representatives were all smiles as they gathered to reminisce about the week’s activities, enjoy outstanding food and entertainment, and mingle with friends.

The biggest smiles were emanating from Wanda Lincoln who chaired the energetic Charity Cup committee, assisted by her equally delighted vice chairperson Trudie Rainone, and the always unflappable Quail Valley team led by the lovely Martha Redner.

Quail Valley Charities has achieved an impressive growth, each year adding new events and increased community participation.  As a result, 24 children or education based programs will receive funding this year; triple that of the first event in 2002.

“We had more runners than ever in the Fun Run and Bridge sold out before the invitations were even sent out,” said Lincoln, adding that all other events sold out as well.

In addition to the 5K Walk/Run, Gourmet Wine & Guest Chef Dinner, Bridge, Tennis and Golf Tournaments, two new events were added this year – the Oceanside Business Association Shopping Day and a P”ART”icipation Art Show & Sale that drew an enormous crowd.

“More than 40 stores opened up for shopping and gave us 15% throughout the whole day,” said Lincoln.

“The Art show was fabulous; the artists are donating 25%.  They had over $30,000 in sales and it runs for another week.  We’re really, really pleased with how generous this community is, and how interested they are in children because that’s where the money is going.”

Having sold last year’s winning 50/50 raffle ticket, Cynthia Falardeau, Executive Director of the Education Foundation, which has received funding all nine years, was using that as an incentive to energetically tempt buyers.

“We’re most grateful,” said Falardeau.  “Not only has it helped us to expand our programs, but it’s like a Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. We have been able to attract new donors because of their endorsement.”

The packed house of approximately 500 guests filled every room in the club; some browsing and bidding on auction items, while others enjoyed the combined sounds of Neil McHugh and Bobby & The Blisters.

A few hearty souls braved the elements outside, where a carved ice sculpture representing the week’s events glistened over the raw bar.  Inside, guests filled their plates with goodies from the All American, Asian, Latin and Siders food stations, and a decadently sumptuous assortment of desserts.

“It’s outstanding the way the community has all come together in support of the event,” said Steve Mulvey, Quail Valley CEO.  “Everyone in this town has been so generous; it’s just heartwarming.”

Many sponsors have been stalwart supporters, including the ever generous George E. Warren Corporation as the Premier Charity Cup Sponsor all nine years.

“The best part is handing the checks out to the various charities and knowing that we’re helping so many children,” said Grand Gala Sponsor Tom Nelson of Merrill Lynch-Nelson Morgan Wealth Management.

“It started off as just a golf tournament,” said Redner.  “Now it’s a whole community wide event; it’s huge.  It’s hard to describe how wonderful it’s been.  As Wanda always says, “It’s all good; it’s all for the kids.”” {igallery 331}

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