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"This isn't a sad foundation, this is an awesome foundation," Founder Melissa Wandall said. "I was a kid in grief. I get the sense that it's too sad, people don't want to hear about (the foundation)."

Mark Wandall Foundation kicks off fundraiser weekend

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

"This isn't a sad foundation, this is an awesome foundation," Founder Melissa Wandall said. "I was a kid in grief. I get the sense that it's too sad, people don't want to hear about (the foundation)."

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Angie Garland of Lakewood Ranch and Toni and Bill Booth of Bradenton check out the silent auction baskets.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Angie Garland of Lakewood Ranch and Toni and Bill Booth of Bradenton check out the silent auction baskets.

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Guests could purchase Bonefish Grill's signature seasonal apple martini, the proceeds of which were given to the Wandall Foundation.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Guests could purchase Bonefish Grill's signature seasonal apple martini, the proceeds of which were given to the Wandall Foundation.

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Diana Rutland, Angela Salvatori and Jennifer Wilson of Bradenton

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Diana Rutland, Angela Salvatori and Jennifer Wilson of Bradenton

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Gwen Wandall, mother-in-law of Foundation founder Melissa, attended the kick-off with her friend Betsy Whalen of Sarasota.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Gwen Wandall, mother-in-law of Foundation founder Melissa, attended the kick-off with her friend Betsy Whalen of Sarasota.

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Jason Lamarca, Penny Tabolt, Cheryl Coombs Farfan and Will Perez of Bonefish Grill with Melissa Wandall, founder. Bonefish Grill has supported the foundation for several years and donated the food for the kickoff.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Jason Lamarca, Penny Tabolt, Cheryl Coombs Farfan and Will Perez of Bonefish Grill with Melissa Wandall, founder. Bonefish Grill has supported the foundation for several years and donated the food for the kickoff.

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Jeules Gibson of Sarasota and board member Kim Miele of Bradenton

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Jeules Gibson of Sarasota and board member Kim Miele of Bradenton

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Guests milling outside examine the silent auction items.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Guests milling outside examine the silent auction items.

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Joe Garland and Christina and Jesse Goldberg, all of Lakewood Ranch

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Joe Garland and Christina and Jesse Goldberg, all of Lakewood Ranch

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Keith and Michelle Miller of Bradenton

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Keith and Michelle Miller of Bradenton

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Ken Decker, Kati and Scott Sands, Michelle Odau and Gary Mort of NADCO Taples & Labels in Sarasota, a foundation supporter

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Ken Decker, Kati and Scott Sands, Michelle Odau and Gary Mort of NADCO Taples & Labels in Sarasota, a foundation supporter

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Lauren and Justin Fornataro of Sarasota

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Lauren and Justin Fornataro of Sarasota

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Robin Rothenbach, a volunteer from Sarasota, talks with Nena Alsaker of North Carolina about the wine selection.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Robin Rothenbach, a volunteer from Sarasota, talks with Nena Alsaker of North Carolina about the wine selection.

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Nena and Roger Alsaker are long-time friends of Melissa Wandall. The couple travels every year from Boone, North Carolina, to participate in the fundraiser weekend.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Nena and Roger Alsaker are long-time friends of Melissa Wandall. The couple travels every year from Boone, North Carolina, to participate in the fundraiser weekend.

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Scott Lewis of Tampa talked about his experiences as a buddy volunteer at the Comfort Zone Camp held Oct. 24. "These kids shared with one another. I felt humbled they would share their experiences with me," he said.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Scott Lewis of Tampa talked about his experiences as a buddy volunteer at the Comfort Zone Camp held Oct. 24. "These kids shared with one another. I felt humbled they would share their experiences with me," he said.

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Tamara Vaughn of Punta Gorda, Kim Miele of Bradenton and Nancy Ng of Palmer Ranch

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Tamara Vaughn of Punta Gorda, Kim Miele of Bradenton and Nancy Ng of Palmer Ranch

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Tara and James Cocco of Sarasota sign in with volunteer Gina Babcock.

Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 |

Tara and James Cocco of Sarasota sign in with volunteer Gina Babcock.

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