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4th Annual “Blues by the Bay” Raises $133,000 for Area Children

IMG_7807The Heights Foundation’s 4th Annual “Blues By the Bay” event raised $133,000 for School Success programs for at-risk children in the Harlem Heights neighborhood in Fort Myers.   Edison National Bank/Bank of the Islands was the presenting sponsor.   Additional sponsors included Golisano Children’s Hospital, Entech Florida IT Services, FPL and The Islander/Island Reporter.  VIP sponsors included Mark & Gretchen Banks, Denise Baumert, Chuck Bergstrom/ReMax of the islands, Jolie Black & Jeffery Gross, Timi Coleman, Steve & Doris Colgate, Bro & Dede D’Arcy, Ron & Dorothy Fitzgerald, Michael & Coleen Frye/ReMax Realty Group, Chris W. and Joni Q. Hall Foundation, Rich & Sandy Heinrich, Kelly Brothers Marine Contractors, Richard & Vicki Pitbladdo, Carl and Dana Schultz and Wayne and Maria Wiles.

IMG_7830The VIP reception was held at the waterfront home of William and Patricia Hearn.  St. Charles Yacht Club hosted the main event.  Live music was provided by The Juice Rockin’ Blues Band.

Guests enjoyed samplings from the area’s finest restaurants including Blue Coyote Supper Club, Café Italia, Cip’s Place, Culinary Education Center of Sanibel, Key Lime Bistro, LaMotta’s Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria, St. Charles Yacht Club and Society. The Timbers Restaurant and Fish Market provided a raw bar for the VIP reception.

Guests had the opportunity to bid on fabulous auction lots including tickets to a Maroon 5 concert, a wine dinner for four at RumRunners, a stay at South Seas Resort with a private sailing class by Offshore Sailing School, an in-home cooking class for ten by renowned Chef Loretta Paganini, a wine cooler from Good Deals Appliances filled with standout wines, including a rare bottle of 100 pt. Screaming Eagle Cabernet, an insider’s trip to Cuba IMG_7788with Chef Gloria Jordan, tickets to James Taylor and Bonnie Raitt with use of a Jaguar or Range Rover from Jaguar Land Rover of Fort Myers, a wine tasting for 20 at Total Wine with hors d’oeuvres from Ruth’s Chris and limousine from JP Morgan, and an in-home dinner for ten by Chef Justin Fleming of St. Charles Yacht Club.   Guests were able to sign up for a special seven course dinner at the home of Dorothy and Ron Fitzgerald by Chef Dustin Valette of Valette’s in Healdsburg, California and St. Charles Yacht Club’s Executive Chef Justin Fleming.

“We are so appreciative of our sponsors, donors, restaurants, guests and our hosts who opened their hearts in support of The Heights Foundation,” said Kathryn Kelly, President and CEO of The Heights Foundation.  “Our School Success programs include our charter school, academic tutoring, after school and summer camp programs, 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 Foundation and The Heights Center visit or call (239) 482-7706.