Tenth Annual “Love Your Neighbor” Raises Record $443,000 for The Heights Foundation and The Heights Center

Love Your Neighbor Video By Bill Rogers Productions

“Love Your Neighbor”, the 10th annual event benefiting The Heights Foundation, raised a record $443,000 for educational programs for at-risk kids in Harlem Heights. The event was held at the Gulf Harbour home of Mary Jo Little. The VIP Pre Party was held at the home of David and Susan Knust. Mark Loren, Norman and Mary Love were honored for their years of support of The Heights Foundation. Norman Love Confections and Mark Loren Designs helped create this signature event and have supported it since its inception.

A $100,000 giving challenge was made by Bill and Caroline Bloomhall, residents of Gulf Harbour and long-time supporters of The Heights Foundation. If the audience pledged a minimum of $100,000 in donations during the Fund-a-Need in the live auction, the Bloomhalls would match the amount. Attendees generously met the challenge and donated $131,250.

Guests enjoyed an assortment of culinary creations from popular local restaurants and chefs including Bahama Breeze Island Grille, Blu Sushi, Cru, Gather, LYNQ, Norman Love Confections, The Timbers Restaurant & Fish Market, Three Fishermen Seafood Restaurant. The Lighthouse Resort/Tiki Bar and Yucatan Beach Stand provided beverages.  VIP attendees enjoyed hors d’oeuvres from Black Salt Culinary and wines from Benovia Winery.

Auctioneer Scott Robertson along with celebrity emcee Kellie Burns of NBC-2 conducted the live auction that included an insider’s trip for eight to Cuba with Chef Gloria Jordan, a sunset cruise and dinner with wine pairings aboard the 101 foot yacht, TÒ-KALÒN, a one-of-a-kind necklace created for the event by Mark Loren, a trip for six to Montpelier Plantation and Beach, St. Kitts and Nevis, a 40 person party on the rooftop at Society, a dinner for eight by renowned chef Brian Roland of Crave Culinaire, and a dinner for eight at the Iona McGregor Fire Station. Music was provided by Randy and Lori Thomas. Casual modeling was provided by Jennifer’s boutique.

Sponsors include Mark Loren Designs, Norman Love Confections, FineMark National Bank & Trust, Suncoast Credit Union Foundation, Ed & Connie Lizak, JP Morgan Chase & Company, B&I Contractors, Avanti Salon & Day Spa, Victor & Katherine Mayeron, Jason & Sherri Huff of Huff Insurance, Ron & Kim Agypt, Mark & Gretchen Banks, Bill & Caroline Bloomhall, Dinah Bloomhall, Dave & Cheryl Copham, Golisano Children’s Hospital, Fred & Elaine Hawkins of Private Client Insurance Services, Rich & Sandy Heinrich, The Javedan Family, Gary & Sharyn Morgan, Richard & Vicki Pitbladdo, Dean & Janie Schreiner, Tom & Linda Van Wyk, Don & Andi Vogt and Cliff & Georgeanne Williams.

Special thanks to Greg & Jo Callaway of Gulf Harbour Properties, Vandy Major Photography, Angela Brandt, Jason’s Deli and Creative Sound & Lighting.

“The Gulf Harbour community has been so supportive of The Heights Foundation and embraced their neighbors in the Harlem Heights community,” said Kathryn Kelly, President and CEO of The Heights Foundation. “Our mission is to build strong, self-sufficient families and education is the key to success. The monies raised support our educational programs that include our charter school, enriching after school and summer camp programs, academic tutoring, scholarship and college access assistance, school supplies, and tuition support. Each program is geared to meet the specific needs of children and young adults who seek to further their education.”

For more information about the Heights Center and The Heights Foundation visit www.heightsfoundation.org or call (239) 482-7706.

Photos by Vandy Major

Photo Booth By Photo Magic Events