by Pete Mazzaccaro
This Friday, the Chestnut Hill Community Association will host the 2014 Black and White Gala, a classic, black-tie affair that serves as one of the association’s most important fund raisers. The event will take place at the Philadelphia Cricket Club, 415 W. Willow Grove Ave., on Friday, Oct. 10, from 7 p.m. to midnight.
As in past runs of the ever-popular event, the gala will include a dinner, dancing and a silent auction. But this year, organizers have decided to add a few things.
“We took what is a beloved tradition and added more excitement,” said gala organizer and association Vice President of Operations Laura Lucas.
That excitement includes a number of Gala firsts.
On arrival to the club, attendees will be greeted by a “red carpet experience” where they can stop on a red carpet and have the photo taken by a paparazzo. Lucas said that guests will be encouraged to tweet photos they take to #bwgalachca live.
Inside, and new this year, will be a live auction. The auction’s theme is “experience,” in which available items include: a meal prepared by a renowned chef, an afternoon on a private golf course, behind-the-scenes tours, kid-friendly adventure and trips to European destinations.
Finally, a big part of the new gala experience will be special VIP tickets, in which guests can reserve a table with a host of notable Hillers including: Dawn Timminey, Matthew Affron, Michael Bamberger, Drew Becher, Bill Green, Gail Harrity, Robert Peck, Elizabeth Perez-Luna and Cindy Webster.
“It’s an opportunity to engage in lively conversation with people who live in our community,” Lucas said.
Old favorites will return, as well, including the live auction and dancing courtesy of Hill resident Scott Romig and his band. Cocktails featuring Dad’s Hat Rye Whiskey will also be in good supply.
There’s also the silent auction.
“For those who love being trend setters, we have a number of unique auction packages and a raffle of a case of Thomas Jefferson wine courtesy of George Woodward Co. which would make great holiday gifts or a signature wine for the perfect host.
The Gala is the single biggest fundraiser for both the CHCA and the Chestnut Hill Community Fund.
Most of all, Lucas said she is excited to have the community event at the recently remodeled Philadelphia Cricket Cub, the entirety of which will be at the disposal of gala attendees, from the bar and dining room to the ballroom and outdoor deck.
“For those who have moved into the area, it’s a great chance to meet new people who care about this community,” she said.
The Black and White Gala has been organized by a committee of 12 including: Lucas, Christopher Padova, Bob Rossman, Remy Pizzichini, Lisa Howe, Art Howe, Alexis Butcher-Dahlin, Cecile Michalich, Carole Tippett, Michala Costello and Kathie Meadows. Staffers Celeste Hardester, Janet Gala, Noreen Spota and Ray DeJohn have also worked to plan, market and manage the gala.
Tickets are priced as follows: $105 for Chestnut Hill Community Association members, $125 for non-members, $85 for Chestnut Hill Community members between 21 and 35 years old, and $175 for a reserved seat at a table with a “notable” guest.
Tickets can be purchased by phone at 215-248-8810, online at chestnuthill.org, or by mail – send a check with name and phone number to the Chestnut Hill Community Fund, 8434 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19118.