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November 15, 2003 - Fashion Helps Move Gathering Place Forward

What: Haute couture fashion show and silent auction

Where: RISE Nightclub @ 1909 Blake Street

When: November 15, 2003

Beneficiary: The Gathering Place, a refuge for rebuilding lives

Host(s): Kevin Larson Presents

Presenting Sponsor(s): Westword, Bebe, SOL, Hugo Boss

Gala Chairperson(s): Andrea Clugston

Corporate Chairperson(s): Nadere Nateghi, Westword Director of Marketing

Co-Chair(s): Kevin Larson, Nadere Nateghi, Natalie Schoeny, Shannon Guzman

Executive Director: Leslie Foster, President & CEO

Committee Members: Kevin Larson, Andrea Clugston, Nadre Nateghi, Natalie Schoeny, Shannon Guzman

Co-President(s): Jean Tutolo, Vice President Development

Entertainment: Kevin Larson Presents, Donna Baldwin Talent, RISE Nightclub

Music: D.J. Phillip G

Sponsors: Marcy & Bruce Benson, Jack Overstreet, M.D.C. Holdings/Richmond Homes, Susan Morrice & Alex Cranberg, Robinson Dairy, Bev Church, Virginia & Mike Davis, Leslie Foster & Jane Berryman, Joe & Kim Hyland and Saunders Construction

Gala Production: Kevin Larson Presents

Menu: Appetizers and cocktails

Attendance: 400

Attire: Haute couture

Special Thanks: The Firm Graphics, Planet Laboratories Hair & Makeup

Models/Fashions: Donna Baldwin Talent: Heather Knapp, Riann Cousino, Heidi Hanley, Leila Toyen,Tangier Barnes, Meijhan Mock, Lauren Harrow, Curry Deutsch, Ally Browne, Devin Bixby, Jamie McClung, Lauri Brown, Sol Store of Lingerie and Hugo Boss

Donors: Arrow Electronics, Cafe Cero, Whole Foods Market, Planet Labs, Residence Inn by Marriott, Cherokee Ranch, Holistic Healing Your Helping Hands, The Ridge At Castle Pines, Denver Nuggets, Mondo Vino, The Great Indoors, Valerie Senz, The Vinyard, Kristen Moorhead Jewelry, Galaxy Grill, Lena's Dream Day Spa, Divino, Hapa Sushi, 24HR Fitness, MELT, The Chocolate Foundry, Manorisms, Cutting Edge Landscaping, Kris Kenny, Salon Fabu, T.Huston & Association Landscaping

Event Coordinator: Terrell A.W. Curtis, The Gathering Place Community Relations Manager

Board of Directors: Mike Davis, Chair; Jim Feldhake, CPA, Treasurer; Susan Vaho, Secretary; Gregory Anderson, chair-elect; Jennifer Bailey, Shawna S. Bohan, Chris Downs, Susan Gallo, Ph.D, Pam Ignat, Erin Johansen, Constance B. Kehmeier, Heidi Keogh, TGPA President; Lucy Kissinger, Antonio Prado-Gutierriez and Chris Whitley

Blacktie Photos by: Marcelo Mainzer

 Haute Couture Helps Homeless Heroines
Haute Couture Helps Homeless Heroines

Marcelo Mainzer

From the moment guests entered the Rise Nightclub on November 15th, they could feel the energy and excitement. Terrell Curtis and a handful of chicly dressed volunteers greeted the guests as they arrived. The pulsing beat of Eurostyle music set the erotic mood.

The Rise Nightclub is a study in modern lines and subdued palette. With several bars located upstairs and downstairs, one is never far form refreshment.

Raising funds among the ultra chic is nothing new and that is the only bow to tradition that Fashion Forward to benefit The Gathering Place performed.

The Gathering Place is Denver’s only daytime drop-in center for women and children who are experiencing homelessness or poverty. It is a safe haven and a wealth of resources for women to acquire new skills for self-sufficiency. At the Gathering Place woman can collect their inner resources and make positive life changes for themselves and their children.

By providing food, shelter, warmth, safety and cleanliness; the Gathering Place upholds the inherent dignity of each woman and child in a caring and structured environment.

The Gathering Place provides women with the opportunities for education, job training and personal development by linking them and their children to necessary community resources and programs.

At the Gathering Place, women create a supportive community to share experiences and successes and are encouraged to actively participate in the planning and daily operations of The Gathering Place, giving them a feeling of ownership and pride.

Sometimes all a person needs to overcome the challenges that life has thrown at them is to know that they are not alone. Here they can count on the help of people who know what they are going through. They not only survive but are able to regain the "strut" in their step that comes from feeling confident and secure.

The models from Donna Baldwin Talent gave everyone a lesson in strutting their stuff as they displayed the fashions from Hugo Boss and SOL (Store of Lingerie). The show began with two mysterious men hiding what appeared to be mannequin parts under the runway. Then to an energetic beat flashing lights and smoke, the parade of fashion began in earnest.

The couture was mostly casual or nightclub style interspersed with lingerie that incited much whooping and whistling from the more testosterone prone in the audience. Then, from under the runway, as if magically spawned from hidden parts, dancers appeared, startling some in the crowd as they ascended the stage.

One dance number led more fashions and another followed; they were fun and well choreographed as was the whole Kevin Larson Presents event, which included an amazing display of grace and strength by a young pole climbing artist.

The finale included all the models and performers crowding the stage to display beauty in fashion and dance. This was a celebration of life in support of an organization that helps woman and children to celebrate life once again.

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