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August 04, 2007 - Rocky Mountain MS Center Bets on a Cure

What: Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Gala

Where: INVESCO field at Mile High

When: Saturday August 4, 2007

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Ticket Prices: Patron ticket, $250/ Individual $175/ Young Professional Tickets, $150

Beneficiary: Rocky Mountain MS Center

Master of Ceremonies: Fox 31's Steve Kelly

Honoree(s): Kenneth King Foundation, Marie Windlinger, Sean McNicholas

Gala Chairperson(s): Ginny Messina, Sandy Unrein, Sandee Walling

Corporate Chairperson(s): Adam Writer

Founders: Norman Daren Writer

Executive Director: Karen Wenzel

President(s): Ginny Mayers

Welcome: Adam Writer

Music: 17th Avenue Allstars

Auctioneer: Kevin McNicholas

Attendance: 500+

Attire: evening attire

Planning Committee: Bonnie Blazek, Mary McNicholas, Ruth Bowling, Kathryn Buckley, Barbara Burke, Patty Core, Mary Edwards, Liz Frawley, Kathy Haruf, Michele Maxfield, Betty Phillips, Suzanne Sime, Hyla Sloane, Patty Spurway, Karen Wenzel

Board of Directors: Adam Writer, Cade Sibley, Daniel Green, David Decolati, Ginny Mayers, Sean McNicholas, MArtha de Ulibarri, Jennifer Fackler, Ashley Giron, Barry Hansen, Florence Jones, Matt Lynett, John Paul Maxfield, Jan Meck, Monty Moore, Casey Nikoloric, Larry Olsen, Ryan Orrell, Chris Plant, Derek Sevier, E. Dale Trower, Sandee Walling, Mary White, Paul Wisor

Blacktie Photos by: Christine Cool

 Auctioneer Kevin McNicholas, auction chair Mary McNicholas and Young Philanthropist award winner Sean McNicholas
Auctioneer Kevin McNicholas, auction chair Mary McNicholas and Young Philanthropist award winner Sean McNicholas

On Saturday August 4, 2007, over 500 guests gathered at INVESCO field at Mile High to attend the 18th annual Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center gala. This year’s gala theme was Casino Royal 2007.

Several young volunteers and friends of the Center dressed up as some of the most memorable James Bond characters and entertained guests while they were enjoying martinis (shaken not stirred of course), hors d'oeuvres and bidding on a silent auction. Magician Richard Kwesell was also there to mystify guests.

In addition, the a capella  group 17th Avenue Allstars were also there to entertain guests. After guests were seated for dinner, chairman of the board of directors for the MS Center Adam Writer took the stage and explained a little about the organization his father, Norman Daren Writer, created back in 1978. One out of every 580 Coloradoans is living with multiple sclerosis. As Fox 31 news anchor Steve Kelly said, “as a state with one of the highest incidence rates in the country, we have a compelling need to help support people living with MS and their families." And that is just what the Rocky Mountain MS Center does. Every year the Center helps thousands of patients annually as well as leading the way in cutting-edge research and new treatment approaches.

During dinner, auction chair Mary McNicholas, along with her husband Kevin, took the stage to begin the live auction portion of the evening. Some of the auction items included an “inning in the booth” at the Colorado Rockies vs. the San Francisco Giants game with KOA radio announcer Jack Corrigan, and a fly fishing package for six at the Reeder Creek Ranch. After dinner Fox31’s Steve Kelly announced this year's award recipients. This year's Organization that Cares award went to the Kenneth King Foundation who has committed interest to the Center’s specialized adult program and has provided over $600,000 to support the program.

Mary Windlinger was the recipient of the 2007 Humanitarian Award. In 1986 Mary’s youngest daughter Susanne was diagnosed with MS, which motivated Mary to become an active supporter of the Center as well as create the Rocky Mountain MS Center Guild, and serve as an active member in the Center itself. Sean McNicholas was the recipient of this year’s Young Philanthropy Award. McNicholas helped create the MS Young Professionals Network, whose mission is to provide opportunities for young professionals to support the work of the MS Center and raise awareness of MS in Colorado through networking, fundraising and volunteer events. After dinner the 17th Avenue Allstars took the stage and guests were encouraged to dance and enjoy a unique European style casino.

For information on the Rocky Mountain MS center please visit their website at

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