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September 15, 2008 - ArtReach Announces Dine & D'art

What: Kickoff Event

Where: Egg and Dart Room, Denver Design Center

When: Monday, September 15, 2008

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Beneficiary: ArtReach

Honoree(s): Bernadette Berger

Executive Director: Karla Johnson-Grimes

Committee Members: HONORARY CHAIRPERSON: Dean Prina, M.D., GALA CHAIRS: Karye Wilhelm, Marc Cutilletta, Nancy Cole; DINNER COMMITTEE: Karye Wilhelm (Chair), Christine Kennedy, Noelle Riccardella; SPONSORSHIP COMMITTEE: Marc Cutilletta (Chair), Karla Johnson-Grimes, Barrett Miller, Tricia Schmuki; VOLUNTEERS AND LOGISTICS COMMITTEE: Karla Johnson-Grimes and Jamie Neuhart; ART COMMITTEE: Nancy Cole and Cindy Hayes (Co-Chairs), Chris Barber, Alicia Goranson, Carrie Loeffler, Kristen "Kiki" Kaufman, Terry Nelson, Dean Prina, M.D., Denise Seery; MARKETING AND PR COMMITTEE: Molly Ross (Chair), Cindy Bell, Voradel Carey, Carol Dawson, Barbara Reasoner; TICKETING COMMITTEE: Tami Lack

Staff: Tricia Schmuki, Director of Development; Sarah Gulinska, Director of Programs; Julie Moragues, Community Ticket Assistant; Arianne Thompson, Administrative Assistant

Catering: Le Point de Rendezvous Caters at Nardo T's

Sponsors: Sprint Press, Egg and Dart, Ltd., ABC Custom Framing, Al's Formalwear, Wine Source, and Le Point de Rendezvous' Catering

Menu: Marinated and grilled Portobello mushrooms topped with crawfish, shrimp, roasted red peppers and mozzarella cheese; Chicken Rousseau with capers, sundried tomatoes, roasted red peppers cooked in white wine sauce; Molfetta sandwich of Genoa salami, Italian ham, Italian dressing and provolone cheese; praline bars

Attendance: more than 80

Attire: Business casual


Board of Directors: BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Marc Cutilletta, Molly Ross, Jeff Starkey, Voradel Carey, Cindy Bell, Nancy Cole, Ellen Gysin, Terry Nelson, Noelle Riccardella, Kevin Funk, Jean Bushong EX-OFFICIOS: Amy Gibbs, Phyllis Hammond, Lee Keatinge, Anne Looby Beermann, Mary Meade, Diane Metz Kreider, Rich Kylberg, Lance Morton, Corey Sisler, Karye Wilhelm, Tami Lack, Connie Wyckoff, Deborah Trout, Adriene Callahan HONORARY DIRECTORS: Jamie Angelich, Michael Crawford, Noel Cunningham, Martha G. Davis, Antonette DeLauro Smith, Emmett Duemke, Colleen George, Leo Goto, Joan Maclachlan, Kalleen Malone, David Stacy, Nancy Stamper, Leslie Tweed King

Blacktie Photos by: Danielle Corriveau

 Honorary Chairperson Dean Prina, M.D. shares a moment with ArtReach Executive Director Karla Johnson-Grimes
Honorary Chairperson Dean Prina, M.D. shares a moment with ArtReach Executive Director Karla Johnson-Grimes

A new, unique fundraising event is hitting Denver. Instead of dine and dash, ArtReach is inviting patrons to “Dine & D’art.” It’s almost like stealing paintings off the wall. The organization announced the idea, and honored two of its outstanding supporters, on Monday, September 15, at its 35th anniversary kick-off party appropriately hosted in the Denver Design Center.

Surrounded by flowing fabric samples and unique chandeliers hanging from high ceilings more than 80 supporters – artists, business leaders and community members – celebrated the contributions of Dean Prina, M.D. and Bernadette Berger. Bernadette Berger and art go together. She has been a loyal supporter of ArtReach for more than a decade. Her philosophy is “Visual arts, as well as music, poetry and literature, refresh and enrich lives,” and her mission has been to share her vision with all. She and her late husband, William M.B. Berger, built a British-centered collection of paintings and numerous works of art spanning six centuries. They also began the Berger Collection Educational Trust of which she is a Trustee. Bernadette enjoys sharing the collection with friends, both old and new, introducing them to the joys of art.

In addition to hosting the ArtReach Ultimate Dinner Party fund raisers in 2001 and 2003, Mrs. Berger divides her time with organizations such as The Denver Art Museum, The Huntington Library, The Met, The Smithsonian, Yale University Art Gallery, Save Venice, and many others. “Bernadette is one of the nicest, most down-to-earth people I have ever met. I am so honored she shares herself with us and the work of ArtReach,” said Karla Johnson-Grimes, executive director of ArtReach.

In a touching acceptance speech about the award, Cindy Hayes relayed, with teary eyes, how much this award meant to her mother and to her family. Cindy Hayes was the connection between Dine & D’art Honorary Chairperson, Dean Prina, M.D. and ArtReach. Dr. Prina is an art enthusiast as well as an extremely well respected pediatrician. Hayes shared the mission of ArtReach with him and he didn’t hesitate to extend a helping hand. “Dean Prina does not just lend his name. He’s an amazing man and a hands-on, go-getter committee member. I am elated to have him involved in our work,” said Johnson-Grimes.

Like kids counting down the days before Christmas, the ArtReach staff and volunteers are eagerly waiting for February 7, 2009, the evening they unveil “Dine & D’art.” The concept combines a delicious meal, with an artist at your table, followed by a focused dash for a coveted piece of art. Tickets for the event are $400 per twosome. It may sound steep, but the payoff is that each couple leaves with a piece of “gallery quality” artwork worth $400 or more. But, it’s not just a race of speed or athletic skills. The excitement comes in hearing your name called. It’s a random order for the dashers, who are entered into the drawing for a chance to chase down the desired piece of art. Names will be drawn from a hat one at a time. Once a name is called, the couple has 20 seconds to sprint to his or her precious piece. All the artwork will be displayed at ABC Custom Framing on a rotating basis and on ArtReach’s web site prior to the event to give “contestants” a chance to formulate their game plans. It’s a perfect play-by-play action evening for Denver’s highly competitive, art-savvy and caring community. Patrons will be literally up to their ankles in artwork (in a good way). Hand-painted athletic shoes will be available for purchase prior to and at the event. Designs are developed according to the purchaser’s fancy and can be anything from Edvard Munch’s Scream in contemporary colors to van Gogh’s Starry Night to something Salvador Dali or a field of daisies. Suggestions and imagination are welcome or the purchaser can say, “Surprise me.” Each pair is a guaranteed one-of-a-kind creation. The mission of ArtReach is to "change lives through the arts" by providing access to arts and cultural experiences for Denver’s underserved and at-risk people of all ages.

Every year ArtReach programs impact and inspire the lives of more than 70,000 individuals and families in our community who face economic, social or physical challenges that would not otherwise have the opportunity to experience the Arts. For more information about Dine & D’art, visit

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