'An Evening at the Avant-Garde: The Swinging Sixties'
Embodying the sixties in true Avant-Garde fashion, guests gathered at the Ulla Searing Student Center on the Ringling College of Art and Design’s campus Saturday, March 22, for “An Evening at the Avant-Garde: The Swinging Sixties.” Classic cars lined the entrance of the event, where guests took photos with the classics that matched their era of attire. Bell bottoms, go-go boots, love beads, tie-dye, crochet and suede vests and round sunglasses — if it was hip in the 60s, it was worn at Avant Garde.
Dressed as President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jackie O., Ringling College of Art and Design President Dr. Larry and Pat Thompson arrived in a presidential limousine and waved to their admirers as they entered the event. Just minutes after the arrival of the Thompsons came the arrival of actor and Oscar winner (and honorary chair of the evening) Richard Dreyfuss, handcuffed, in a police car, and dressed in 60s drag. Dreyfuss made the rounds with his wife, Stella, before changing into “normal” garb for dinner.
Following the arrival of Dreyfuss and the outdoor cocktail hour, more than 400 guests made their way into the center to continue the groovy evening. Nothing but good vibes continued from then until the event ended at midnight. Following dinner and live auction (emceed by Michael Klauber, who donned a '60s Afro wig), guests danced to the tunes of Frequency and chilled out in the Haze Lounge (beanbag chair lounging? right on!), all while taking in the sights of the kaleidoscope show.
As stated by Dr. Larry Thompson, in the (paraphrased) words of President John F. Kennedy, “Ask not what Ringling College can do for you, ask what you can do for Ringling College!”
The 18th annual student scholarship fundraiser has raised nearly $1.5 million for scholarships since the inception, and raised an estimated $100,000 at this year’s event.
Lakewood Ranch Community Fund 2014 Gala ‘Havana Nights’
Conjuring up images of Cuba’s capital city Havana, the Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club was transformed into a sultry Cuban soiree for the 10th annual Lakewood Ranch Community Fund Gala. Think hand-rolled cigars, classic scotches, a mojito bar, Caribbean style seafood and rhumba dancing to the sounds of Double Vision.
The event was co-chaired by Julie Smith, Angela Massaro-Fain, Brian Kennelly and Ron Masseo.