Broadway was brought to Michigan City on Friday November 15 at the Blue Chip Casino Hotel and Spa. It was the United Way of La Porte County's annual fundraiser, A Night in New York New York was this year's theme, and it proved to be as glitzy and glamorous as the city itself.
The evening began with a dapper spectacle as guest made their way into the Stardust Event Center dressed to impress. The Stardust was festooned with appropriate decorations that depicted a night on the town in New York City, ladies dressed as Rockettes, famous Broadway characters, and a Statue of Liberty that seemed...alive.
“Here we are, the place to be… it’s standing room only, there are over 600 people, over 90 silent auction items, seven live auction items for trips that you aren’t going to get anywhere else for great prices,”Dave Sisk community investment manager for United Way of La Porte County. “What else could you ask for? And it’s only $75 a ticket and you get all of this. This is our big fundraiser for us. We do a lot of events but this is the big one. Last year we raised over $120,000 and this year we’re going to try and top that.”
A silent auction was held outside of the main room where patrons could bid on many fabulous items like a Jagermeister guitar, tickets to a Bulls game, autographed sports jerseys, Makita power tools, other awesome gift baskets, and a lot more. A live auction took place as well where vacation packages and amazing trips to places like Ireland and Italy were sold to the highest bidder.
Delicious fare was provided by local restaurants and an open bar was available to those who wished for libations. Long tables lined the perimeter of the grand banquet room, each laid out with the tempting offerings of each restaurant. Guests were able to nibble on BBQ ribs, savory pork tacos and Spanish rice, crispy fried chicken, chocolate truffles, decadent cheesecake, various adorable cupcakes, and pecan sables.
James Dworkin, Chancellor for Purdue University North Central, was attending the event that evening with his wife. They came to support the United Way and enjoy a night together.
“Ever since my wife, Nancy, and I have been in this area we’ve coming to this event,” Chancellor Dworkin said. “It’s a very important organization and at Purdue North Central, we had a goal of raising $11,421 [for the United Way of La Porte County] and we exceeded our goal by 18% and so I’m really proud of our university. Nancy and I are very supportive of the United Way because of all the good things that they do. I was on the united Way of La Porte County Board of Directors and I’m on the Porter County Board of Directors and now I’m on the Indiana Association of United Ways so I’m a big believer. It’s a great opportunity tonight to meet and greet old friends.”
In the middle of the large room, round tables bedecked with lovely tablescapes. Guests milled about the room, mingling and moving from table to table, or watching the live entertainment that took place on the main stage. Throughout the night, games were played and musical performances from hit Broadway musicals took place on the brightly lit stage for the guests viewing pleasure.
Proceeds from the night go to the 22 local agencies that the United Way of La Porte County funds as well as 2-1-1, a Volunteer Center, Success by Six, and Kindergarten Countdown. These agencies provided assistance to over 25,000 people in the county.
“The community has to understand that it’s their United Way, and so when I see them all here I feel like they understand the community aspect of the United Way,”Kris Pate, Executive Director of the United Way of La Porte County. “Everyone here is engaged in what we’re doing so it’s just wonderful to have people come out like this. We have such wonderful people round this community that volunteer, people that give what they can to help, we have people that are mentoring kids and helping out wherever turn and so I think we’re really blessed around here to have these folks. And there is a whole huge room filled with them tonight!”
Live Auction Sponsors: Dillon Transportation
Photography Sponsor: Franciscan St. Anthony
Silent Auction Sponsor: IU Health La Porte
Decorations Sponsor: LaPorte Savings Bank
Auctioneer and WIMS Sponsor: NIPSCO
Entertainment Sponsor: Sauers Automotive
Beer Sponsor: United Beverage
Liquor Sponsor: Southern Wine and Spirits
Food and beverages were provided by: Long Beach Country Club, Pottawattomie Country Club, Galveston Steakhouse, Rodini’s, India House, Top Dog, The Game (Blue Chip Casino), Bit O Swiss, Eli’s Cheesecake, Suzie’s Cafe, Little Chocolates