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Black Tie Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2018 3 years ago

Friends surprise Graci McGillicuddy at Children's Guardian Fund Luncheon

Graci McGillicuddy celebrated her 77th birthday, Brian Lipton plans a surprise, Cause 4 Fashion tickets are selling quickly and more.
by: Kayleigh Omang Contributor
Graci McGillicuddy and her friends at the Helping Our Kids Soar luncheon.

Birthday Queen

When Graci McGillicuddy walked through the doors of Michael’s On East on Nov. 15 for the Children’s Guardian Fund fall luncheon, Helping Our Kids Soar, she was greeted by her table with open arms and birthday surprises. It was Graci’s 77th birthday, so her table mates dressed her in a sash and tiara for the occasion. They also gave her a bag with an orchid and SkinnyPop popcorn. The ladies who celebrated with her were Lindsey May, Sally Dickinson, Michelle Andrews, MaryAnn Stuart, Ashley Coone, Giovanna McGrath, AJ Jansen, Brenna Wilhm. and Sarah Wertheimer.

“They are all special in helping me make it a better world,” Graci says of her table mates.

A sonny surprise

AJC Regional Director Brian Lipton surprised AJC national’s

Emmett and Melanie Pell

Assistant Executive Director Melanie Pell by placing a photo of her son, Emmett, on her table before she arrived. Pell lives in Kentucky with the 4-year-old, but because she’s often away on work trips, Brian wanted to make her smile. “He’s delicious and delightful!” Melanie says of her son.


A cause to attend ... At the Neuro Challenge Foundation’s first annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon on Nov. 14, Cause 4 Fashion Co-Chairwoman Mary Kenealy revealed that only 80 seats remain for the fashion show and luncheon Dec. 7 at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. Call 926-6413 for tickets. Raising a b(r)unch ... University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee’s Brunch on the Bay on Nov. 4 surpassed its fundraising goal with flying colors. The college hoped to raise $250,000 for student scholarships, and raised $315,000. The most brilliant of Wine, Women and Shoes ... Susan Macrae’s table chose both comfort and style when it came to their shoe choice Nov. 9 at Wine, Women and Shoes. The ladies had the ultimate girls day with gift bags filled with slippers, personal wine bottles, a water thermos and jewelry.


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I’m Kayleigh, Black Tie reporter. My cats and I moved here from North Dakota and I earned degrees from Minnesota State Moorhead in photojournalism and entrepreneurship. You’ll find me covering all the big fundraisers in town. Reach me at 941-366-3468 ext. 330.

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