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April 13, 2012 - The 2012 Gathering Place Gala: Bon Temps on Bourbon Street

What: Fundraiser for The Gathering Place

Where: Sports Authority Field at Mile High, East Club Lounge

When: Friday, April 13, 2012

Time: 5:30-7:00- silent auction 7:00-7:45- dinner 7:45-8:45- program and live auction 8:45-9:30- dessert

Beneficiary: The Gathering Place

EMCEE: Kristin and Shawn Miller of Elevation Media

Introductions: President and CEO Leslie Foster

Welcome: Denver Mayor Michael Hancock

Catering: Epicurean Catering

Music: Tyree Morris & Hearts of Worship

Sponsors: Associate Sponsors: Sandy and Gary Autrey, Janice and Jim Campbell, Elizabeth and Vincent Duncan, Jr., and Whiting Petroleum Corporation; Honorary Sponsors: Abacus Financial Group, LLC, Berenbaum Weinshienk PC, Randy Carter and BeneFactor/Boettcher & Co, Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, Ehrhardt Keefe Steiner & Hottman PC, Leslie Foster and Jane Berryman, Pam and Joe Ignat, Becky and Eric Jacobson, Katie and Bart Johnson, Heidi and Randy Keogh, Elizabeth Gundlach Neufeld and Daniel Neufeld, The Nord Family Foundation, Brenda Roush, and Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell Foundation; Media Sponsor: Denver Life Magazine

Auctioneer: Don Martin

Menu: Romaine wedge salad with creole mustard vinaigrette, followed by piri piri grilled chicken and gumbo prawns served on a bed of sauteed winter mustard greens, presented with a stone ground polenta cake infused with haystack goat cheese and herbs

Attire: Cocktail attire with New Orleans flair

Board of Directors: Ramona Lampley, Board Chair; Rachel Basye, Chair Elect; Allison Panter, Secretary; Bob Alder, Treasurer; Andrew Peterson, Immediate Past Board Chair; Rachel Allon; Leslie Minna Budman; Emily Bustos; Mark Colvin; Jennifer Goss; Beverly Granger; Ron Guillot; KC Higgins; Queen Jackson; Britta Evans Miles; Roweena Naidoo; Elizabeth Gundlach Neufeld; Linda Schmehl; Leslie Foster

Blacktie Photos by: Janet Snell-Bergeon

 Leslie Foster, CEO of The Gathering Place, with Denver Mayor Michael Hancock
Leslie Foster, CEO of The Gathering Place, with Denver Mayor Michael Hancock

The annual gala to benefit The Gathering Place was held on Friday, April 13 at Sports Authority Field, with a theme of 'Bons Temps Bourbon Street.'  The Gathering Place gala is the single largest fundraiser for The Gathering Place. Money raised at the gala directly supports the programs and services offered at The Gathering Place, ensuring that they are able to continually provide resources, support, and community to the thousands who seek refuge within their doors.

This event began 23 years ago as the Brown Bag Benefit luncheon put on by The Gathering Place Association. This year, a sold out crowd enjoyed browsing must-have silent auction items, an exciting live auction, delicious New Orleans-inspired food, and welcoming remarks by Denver Mayor Michael Hancock.

Guests browsed the silent auction while listening to live music by Tyree Morris & Hearts of Worship and overlooking the Denver skyline as darkness fell.  Guests then enjoyed a sumptuous dinner of piri piri chicken served with sauteed winter mustard greens and stone ground polenta cake, followed by a dessert buffet of bourbon pecan bread pudding and angel food cake squares tossed with bourbon custard.

The Gathering Place President and CEO Leslie Foster welcomed guests and discussed the important work of the organization and the support they provide for women and children facing homelessness and poverty.  She also presented the 'Above and Beyond Awards' to Daniel and Elizabeth Neufeld, King of Glory Lutheran Church, and Turner Construction Company.  The evening concluded with an exciting live auction, led by auctioneer Don Martin

Here are some amazing statistics about The Gathering Place:

  • Recorded 61,970 visits by women and 6,734 visits by children.
  • Provided more than 65,000 nutritious meals.
  • Distributed 4,558 toiletry and hygiene bags.
  • Distributed 21,450 diapers.
  • Distributed 105,596 pounds of food.
  • Tutored 79 different GED students.
  • Served 2,135 different women in Bridget’s Boutique.
  • Received volunteer time that equated to more than 12 full-time staff positions.

For more information about The Gathering Place, log on to


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