Eagle Ridge Hospital Gala 2017
It was an unforgettable evening of philanthropy, entertainment, and excitement. The 27th annual Evening of Caring Gala raised much-needed funds for Eagle Ridge Hospital and attendees arrived in their finest and did not disappoint with donations totaling over $1.2 million dollars.
Held at the Molson Canadian Theatre at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver, the gala offered an elegant evening which included a champagne reception, sit down dinner, live and silent auction, exciting draws, and an amazing show. The gala was a sold out event; over 390 arriving guests were treated to valet service and a red carpet receiving line with greetings from Eagle Ridge Hospital Foundation’s Board. Once inside guests mingled at the champagne reception and posed with friends at the fun green-screen photo station which produced keepsake photos of themselves in an operating room setting.
As guests made their way to their seats, a fantastic flash mob performance by The Source Dance Company signaled the start of the evening. Gala co-hosts, Global TV’s Kaitlyn Herbst and Cathy Cena of Tri-City Community TV, were engaging and led a lively game of ‘Head & Tail’ with the audience complete with a $1,000 cash prize. Recent BC Musicians Hall of Fame inductee, Diane Lines, delighted with a performance during dinner from her award winning show ‘Jump’. After a delectable three course plated dinner from the Hard Rock culinary team, all were invited to visit the ‘Sweet Station’ for a well-deserved post-repast indulgence. To be followed by a trip to the gin tasting bar which was constructed wholly of ice, for a specialty cocktail. The Live & Silent Auction, as well as a thrilling Fund-A-Need segment, engaged and encouraged the audience to open their wallets and help fund the purchase of three life-saving pieces of equipment; a Cardiac Echo Machine, an Airseal System, and a Resusci Anne simulator mannequin.
Oenophiles relished the opportunity to participate in the featured Wall of Wine Draw. Different from other wine draws, guests purchased elegantly numbered bottle stoppers at $100 each with only 100 stoppers available. At the end of the night, one number was drawn to reveal the winner of the 100 bottles of wine with a value of over $1,700.
Sharon Perry, local accountant and daughter of Bruce Kehler who passed away suddenly in April 2017, spoke during the evening’s keynote address of her family’s experience at Eagle Ridge Hospital where her father was treated. At the end of the evening, Sharon made her way up on stage again, this time accompanied by her family to make extraordinary announcement.
“Eagle Ridge Hospital gave us an extra 8.5 years with the greatest man in our world,” said Perry. “He was selfless and gave everything to his family and community. As nurses and doctors, you are not thanked enough. My family and I are hoping to demonstrate our thanks and appreciation by honouring my dad’s spirit through a pledge of $1 million to expand the cardiology department at Eagle Ridge Hospital.”
The news was greeted with appreciation by Eagle Ridge Hospital Foundation’s executive director Charlene Giovannetti-King. “We are overjoyed by the generosity of Sharon and the Kehler family,” said Giovannetti-King. “This leadership gift honours Bruce Kehler and exemplifies his life-long commitment to helping the Tri-Cities and many communities around the world.”
The donation is the foundation’s largest in its 35-year history.
(This article was originally published in Vancouver Boulevard Chinese/English Magazine).