Annual Fundraiser Is An Overwhelming Success and Brought Exciting Awareness to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa BayNov 27, 2017
The 19th annual Art of Helping Children Gala at the Hilton Tampa Downtown was once again a huge success! Thanks to the 600 attendees and USAmeriBank, the evening was full of excitement. The theme “Big”, based on the 1988 Tom Hanks film, allowed the adults let loose and act like kids! Upon entering the Gala guests were greeted by Zoltar the Great and could get their fortunes read. The VIP room showcased large floor pianos for everyone to enjoy. Dinner tables displayed toys and games as centerpieces. The ballroom was transformed into an elegant playroom with video games, foosball, and a ping-pong table!
To kick-off the evening Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay’s CEO, Stephen Koch, was recognized for his 15 years of commitment to changing the lives of children facing adversity for the better, forever. The silent auction lasted through dinner and was closed with a performance based on the popular scene from “Big” where the characters Josh and MacMillan play a duet on the large floor piano in the world-famous FAO Schwarz toy store.
After dinner, Big Sister Laura/Little Sister Carrie and Big Brother Oscar/Little Brother Jarell from the Youth Ranch mentoring program shared their story about being matched and spoke about how the experience has changed their lives in positive ways. Then Brian Auld of the Tampa Bay Rays shared the numbers that show why mentoring matters, such as 98% of our Littles move to the next grade level. He then called for donations so that Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay can continue to make positive changes in lives of children in our community! The evening closed with a live band and smooth dance moves.
Thanks to all that attended the event and all the sponsors for making this amazing event a reality!