AN EVENING OF WISHES GALA - A CELEBRATION OF UNFORGETTABLE WISHES IN THE GREATER ROCHESTER AREA
Rochester, NY – March 19, 2014 -------- Rochester philanthropic and business leaders gathered to celebrate the wishes of local children with life-threatening medical conditions on Saturday, March 15, 2014 at Locust Hill Country Club in Pittsford. Close to 300 guests raised funds to help grant many heartfelt wishes throughout the nine-county radius of Rochester. We are thrilled to announce a gross fundraising total of $145,000, which allows Make-A-Wish®
Western New York to grant 20 local wishes!
Western New York granted 146 wishes in Fiscal Year 2012 – 2013 and the community helped to celebrate the dreams-come-true of all the wish children and their families from the past year. The extraordinary community-supported fundraising event featured wish children, like Craig, Emily, Rayva, Natalie and Brittney. They brought with them touching stories to share with the crowd. Attendees also enjoyed live and silent auctions, the signature wish sponsorship, dinner, dancing with live music by Bacci.
We were honored to bring wish recipient Brittney to the stage as the featured guest speaker, sharing a powerful testament to the impact of her wish to Hawaii. Brittney, born with a life-threatening heart condition, faced the heartbreaking challenge at age 16 when learning her younger brother, Blake was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma. Blake lost his battle to cancer just weeks after his wish trip to Walt Disney World®
Resort and his passing impacted the surrounding community greatly. Brittney’s inspirational message on how Make-A-Wish provided much-needed hope, strength and joy to her and her family’s lives brought the entire room of attendees to a standing ovation, adding to the overall giving spirit of the crowd.
We applaud David Mammano from Next Step Education Group who joined us as this year’s Gala Chairman, as well as Mike Catalana from 13-WHAM Sports who agreed to act as the evening’s emcee. Special thanks to Harper Family Foundation for Platinum Sponsorship, as well as First Niagara Private Client Services and ABCO HVACR Supply + Solutions for the fundraising support.