Fundraiser was just perfect


Perfection. A small but mighty band of women found it last Thursday night. They cajoled, begged and coerced plenty of willing accomplices in our great city to come out and help them. But they and they alone get credit for absolute perfection in so many different areas. If there were a Nobel Fundraising Prize, these women would be on their way to Oslo.

The annual Taste of Carmel at the Ritz Charles was perfect in so many ways. First, perfection achieved in nurturing a mission to support Orchard Park Elementary. Easily the elementary school with the greatest financial challenges but also the school brimming with cub heart and soul. It boasts a rich and diverse student population claiming 28 different native languages. It is hard to resist the call of these persistent women who want to see new soccer goals, ORFF musical instruments, art instruction and classroom enrichment programs for the kids at Orchard Park.

The women probably didn’t realize their luck, holding their event in a totally remodeled Ritz Charles. More than a year in the re-making, perfection once again from a well known and trusted old friend turned new with modern, fresh furnishings and a top to bottom overhaul. I heard several head turning comments, “This isn’t the Ritz Charles I remember.”

Co-Chairs Jennifer Penix and Ann Bernard supported by Susie Harless, Nicole Hackett, Kamila Spink, Katie Lawson, Melinda Miller and Susanna Williams most likely hoped, but could never guarantee, the stars were going to align and come together for the perfect evening. The perfectionist women behind Taste of Carmel invited Shane Rodimel to croon throughout the eve and they made sure there was enough food to feed 1,000 people from practically every eatery that has even heard of Carmel, let alone does business in Carmel. Not a stomach went away unsatisfied as there was something for every pallet.

As lofty as the amount seemed to be, they achieved their fundraising goal one dollar at a time. The Distinctive Diamond bling ring experience along with the bidding on the silent auction items got them to fundraising perfection. More than 700 people rushed the doors at 6 p.m. and stayed until the very end. Everyone in attendance there to help make sure Orchard Park will have not just one, but a soccer goal at both ends of the field. Like it should be. Just perfect.

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