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All Children's Hospital's magic charity ball makes money appear


An enchanting theme, "Abracadabra," gave the 78th annual Charity Ball for All Children's Hospital a wide berth for creativity. The dining tables at the Hilton St. Petersburg Carillon Park held gazing balls, wizard hats and underlighted floral arrangements, and a Harry Potter-style backdrop hung behind the bandstand.

Cirque performers greeted guests, who included Gary Carnes and his wife, Jean; Ed and Sylvia Ameen; Jay and Cynthia Fleece; Gene and Karen Lang Johnston; David and Marcie Feaster; Del and Stephanie Goforth; Bill and Sylvia Lane; Van and Jane Sayler; and Dr. Lawrence and Carole Merritt.

There even was a "magic potion" cocktail created for the evening, and dessert was chocolate top hats, wands and rabbits nestled in chocolate mousse.

It was a fun evening presented by the ACH Evening Guild to raise money for the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit.

Patrons included hospital president and chief executive Tricia Davidson, who chaired the gala committee, assisted by Sherry Sexton, Mary Nelson, Jean Prina, Cheryl Matala, Vickii Walters, Marcee Schnieders, Sue Hands, Laura Beckner, Janet Lynn, Sandy Moss, Carol Nelson, Carol McGurk, Terri Shook, Shonee Hadlock, Judi Dryer and Marjie Ruth.


Hospice of the Florida Suncoast turned to nature for "Elements," the theme of its annual fundraising gala in St. Petersburg's Renaissance Vinoy Resort, which celebrated earth, water, air and fire. It was a bittersweet evening dedicated to the memory of Sally Spencer, who was a key organizer of the first Hospice Ball in 2002.

Honorary chairs were Mary Jean Etten, a founder of Hospice of the Florida Suncoast, and Anne Winchell, whose late husband was a patient. Both are active volunteers.

President and executive director Mary Labyak welcomed guests to the gala, which raised money for Hospice House Brookside in Palm Harbor.

Organizing the event were Martha Baker, Susan J. Brown, Deborah Collier, Morgan Cook-Smith, Chris Davies, Carole M. Devine, Leila Doin, Marsha T. Emanuel, Barbie Engelhardt, Ami K. Forte, Linda Harris, Gail C. Keck, Theresa Klingel, Jeanie Renfrow, Carol S. Rindone, Kathy Stahl and Kathy J. Wilder, plus hospice staff members Kristin Aguilar, Niki Pasek and Bryn Warner.


The Coliseum sparkled at "Diamonds to Denim: A Swanky Soiree," the Junior League of St. Petersburg's inaugural partnership ball. Gems, both genuine and faux, glistened under the soft lights.

Academy Prep Center of St. Petersburg was the co-host and beneficiary of the event, chosen from among 27 nonprofit agencies that applied to participate in the gala.

Event chair Kristin Connell and chair-elect Jenna Worden-Brooks led a committee that included Tiffany MacFawn Webb, Amy Jones, Donna Mainguth, Rachele Orsini, Corrie Stover, Patricia White, Stephanie Sikes, Amy Walter, Elise Schreiner, Laura Topliffe and Stacy Brandenstein.

Academy Prep and the Junior League will receive equal proceeds from the event; the league will select a different partner agency each year.


Purple, green and gold masks, boas, and other accessories were on display at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club for Infinity's annual "Mardi Gras Madness" to benefit Brookwood, Community Action Stops Abuse and Help A Child, agencies whose work is to prevent and treat abuse and neglect.

Winners of the mask contest were Vera Brantley-Jones, Mary Wheeler and Lois Weissman.

Maggi McQueen and Kim Horstmann were co-chairs for the event, which featured clothing from Stein Mart and Ambria's Gallery of Wearable Art.

The event committee included Infinity president Nora Pearson, Joann Barger, Debbie Barnes, Debra Belcher, Vera Brantley-Jones, Hugh Ann Cason-Kelly, Fern Clayton, Roseanna Costa, Diane Fair, Susan Fearnley, Dot McCarthy, Karen McCollum, Bernice McCune, Catherine McGarry, Iole Minieri, Elise Minkoff, Jackie O'Brien, Sparky Paradis, Sally Poynter, Edie Spies, Ann Vickstrom, Diane Winning and Teresa Wittstruck.

All Children's Hospital's magic charity ball makes money appear 02/28/09 [Last modified: Saturday, February 28, 2009 3:30am]
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