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31st Anniversary Boys & Girls Clubs Jingle Bell Ball Sparkles!

PALM BEACH, FL (December 20, 2011) – Guests were recently treated to an evening of festive elegance with more than 30 stunning and creative holiday wreaths and centerpieces decorated by well-known local designers, and a ballroom swathed in shimmering lighting and festive holiday decor. It was all part of the 31th Annual Dinner Dance to benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. The “Jingle Bell Ball” hosted by Mary Freitas, Chairman, Thomas Quick, Honorary Chairman and Ross W.W. Meltzer, Vice Chairman took place at The Breakers Hotel. The Design Committee Chairmen were Lisa Erdmann, Stephen Mooney and Keith Williams with Susanna Dwinell and Sylvia James as Journal Chairmen. Mark Edwards Partners was the Platinum Benefactor of the evening.

“I was thrilled that we were able to raise over $500,000 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. The wonderful services that they provide for these deserving children is truly remarkable”, said Mary Freitas.

Guests were greeted by children of the Boys & Girls Clubs Jingle Bell Chorus who invited them into the cocktail reception in the Mediterranean Ballroom featuring a “holiday”-spirited silent auction of the decorated wreaths, festive table tops, and “under the tree gifts” created by local designers A festive holiday mood was added with cocktails created by Corporate Sponsor Bacardi including Eggnog Martinis made with Bacardi Oakheart Spiced Run and Merry Mint Mojitos. Intense bidding ensued for items made by William Kopp, Chad Renfro, Joseph Pubillones, International Polo Club in Wellington, Thom Mathieu, Mary Mahoney, Stationer on Sunrise, C. Orrico, Lisa Erdmann, 4 Hounds Press, Stephen Mooney, Ditto Dude, Pioneer Linens, Keith Williams and a very special basket created by Bacardi featuring a single bottle of rare Bacardi Reserva Limitada Rum which was aggressively pursued by several guests who wanted it under their tree.

Santa’s elves from the Design Studio of the Breakers transformed the Venetian ballroom into a dazzling forest of silver sequined snowflakes and northern lights. Guests were seated among rectangular and round tables featuring an array of winter white florals and whimsical rhinestone shades placed on towering glass vases. Tom Quick lead a lively and competitive auction featuring beautiful 18K white gold earrings with Natural 2,8 carat Burma Rubies and 1.38 carat round brilliant cut diamonds from Betteridge Jewelers in Palm Beach, a special Las Vegas meet and greet with the one and only Celine Dion and a week vacation in an exclusive family compound in Nantucket. With visions of sugarplums guests danced the night away under hundreds of shimmering snowflakes to the sounds of the Alex Donner Orchestra which had the capacity crowd in fine holiday form.

The Jingle Bell Ball was most fortunate to have incredible event supporters with Platinum Benefactor Mark Edward Partners; Gold Benefactors Betteridge Jewelers, Michele and Howard Kessler, and Patrick Park; Silver Benefactors James Berwind, C. Kenneth & Laura Baxter Foundation, Laura Evans, John Firestone, Judy and James Harpel, Ross W. W. Meltzer, PNC Bank, Thomas Quick, Samuel J. and Connie Frankino Charitable Foundation, Susan and Dominick Telesco and Betsy and Wally Turner; Hosts Alex Donner Foundation, Allison and Brooks Bishop, Paula and Bob Butler, Llwyd Ecclestone, Patricia and Robert Francis, Sylvia James, Patty and Anthony Myura, Neiman Marcus – Palm Beach, Pauline Pitt, Daniel Ponotn, Publix Supermarket Charities, Sabadell United Bank, Christine and Steven Schwarman, Eddy and John Taylor, Norman and Bill Tiefel, Kathryn and Leo Vecellio, Mary Lo Watchman, Carol & Edward Watkins and Suzanne and Robert Wright.

Among those toasting the evening were: Don Burns and Greg Connors, Trish and Thorne Donnelly, Linda and Edward Dweck, Llwyd Ecclestone, Susan & Dom Telesco, Allison and Brooks Bishop, Patty and Anthony Myura, Eddy and John Taylor, Kathryn and Leo Vecellio, Dan Ponton, Susan and James Keenan, Betsy and James Meany, Carol and Tom Kirchhoff, Betsy and Wally Turner, David Lambert, Mac and Jamie Zahringer, Margot and Ashton DePeyster, Lisa and Lars Erdmann., Barbara and Michael Crimi, Michelle and Reid Boren, Kenn Karakul, Penny and Keith Williams, Cece Farris, John Firestone and Marsha Wilson, Julie and John Kime, Diane and Michael Perry, Judy and James Harpel. Sylvia James, James Berwind, Sonja and Mark Stevens, Stephen Mooney, Laura Evans, Michelle and Howard Kessler and Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County President Mary O’Connor with her husband Tim O’Connor.

Proceeds from the Jingle Bell Ball support the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County, which has 13 sites located in the County. The Clubs provide services during non-school hours, as well as summer camp opportunities, to more than 7,000 boys and girls from ages 6 to 18. Clubs emphasize educational, vocational, social, recreational, health, leadership, and character building skills in a positive and safe atmosphere. Through quality programs, the Club experience provides children with the
guidance they need to make a healthy transition from childhood to young adulthood. For more information on the “Jingle Bell Ball” please call 561-683-3287 or visit www.bgcpbc.org.