08 Nov
  • By bbbsnutmeg

Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters’ 50th Anniversary Gala

hc-ugc-ugc-relatedphoto-nutmeg-big-brothers-big-sisters-50th-anniver-2016-11-13Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters, Connecticut’s premier youth mentoring organization, announced that it has tallied the results for its 2016 “Start Something Big” Gala, and that the event surpassed its goals.

“The evening was a great success on many levels,” said Andy Fleischmann, President and CEO of Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters. “We surpassed our fundraising goal, bringing in more than $185,000. Our silent auction and the fund-the-mission efforts both set all-time records. And nearly 250 people were with us to celebrate our 50th Anniversary – and the fact that our professionally supported mentors have reached more than 65,000 children since our founding. Finally, we had many Little Brothers and Sisters attending with their Big Brothers and Big Sisters, allowing them to see how many people in the community appreciate the great things they’re accomplishing.”

The “Start Something Big” 50th Anniversary Gala took place at the Society Room in downtown Hartford. The evening featured a cocktail reception, a silent and live auction stocked with great items – including trips to the Caribbean and any destination in the U.S. Guests enjoyed specialty cocktails, passed hors d’oeuvres and multiple food stations with gourmet selections. Dessert was donated by the Cake Gypsy Boutique Bakery, and a coffee/espresso bar came courtesy of Omar Coffee. Tim Lammers, Fox 61 weekday morning news anchor, was the event’s master of ceremonies. Auctioneer Paul Stansel led the live auction. And attendees stayed late to dance to the great music of Shaded Soul.

The event’s Big Dream sponsor was The Travelers. The Start Something sponsors were Aramark and Bank of America. The Match Maker sponsors were the Barnes Group, CNC Software, the Connecticut Joint Replacement Institute at St. Francis Hospital, Mohegan Sun, Comcast, United Healthcare and Tecton Architects.

A highlight of the evening was the speech delivered by former Little Brother Ed Michaels, a successful West Hartford businessman. In 1973, when Ed was 7, his father passed away suddenly. Ed’s mom enrolled him in the Nutmeg program because she knew he needed a strong male figure in his life.

“I know this relationship has been as valuable and rewarding to him (Ed’s Big Brother) as it has been to me,” Ed said. “The greatest thing someone can give a young child is their time. For 42 years and counting, Sy has given his time to me and for that I will always be grateful. The loss of a parent is immeasurable, but the match Nutmeg created helped soften the blow and make me the person I am today.”

“We’re so grateful to everybody who made ‘Start Something Big’ a major success,” said Jillian Comolli, Nutmeg’s Special Events Coordinator. “A wide range of very generous individuals contributed to the evening’s excellence – people like our hard-working and innovative Gala committee, our extremely supportive board, our industrious volunteers and staff, and all those who donated to our auctions, our good media friends who helped us promote the fundraiser, and, of course, all those who purchased tickets and sponsorships.”

This item was posted by Courant community contributor and Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters Marketing Director Brian Kelly.

Click here for original post via The Hartford Courant.

Click here to view a photo gallery of the event by Courant Photographer Alex Syphers.

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