On Saturday, November 3, 2018 Willow Park Wines & Spirits will host its 25th annual Charity Wine Auction, an event that is sure to delight even the strictest teetotaller. This year’s Diamond Ball will again be in support of the Vintage Fund (established in 2001), which focuses on education, health care and seniors’ needs in the community. To date, the fund has donated over $5 million to local charities.
“Each year, our goal is to give our guests a surreal experience that leaves them wondering how on earth we will up the ante for the next year,” says Suzanne Henuset, co-chair of the auction. “It is our hope that this momentous 25th year will leave you in awe and amazement.”
The event will feature libations from 25 world-class wineries, distilleries and breweries. Premium wines will be represented by a winery principal – either the winemaker, owner or ambassador of the estate – several of whom will travel from France, Italy and California to attend. Guests will also enjoy handcrafted cocktails from renowned mixologists, unique and delectable dishes from 25 of Calgary’s best chefs and catering companies, and spirited entertainment to keep the party rocking.
“The silent and live auction offerings will be as diverse as ever,” continues Henuset, “with some of the most sought-after bottles, beautiful trips and once-in-a-lifetime experiences all awaiting the winning bid.” Live auction items include trips to Italy, France, Spain, New York for the U.S. Open and Napa for BottleRock as well as a diamond tennis bracelet.
“Each year, the success of our event continues to grow and we attribute that to the generosity of our fabulous guests and donors both local and from around the world,” Henuset says. “This year, we hope to once again raise $300,000.”
As in past years, the auction will support Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation and the proposed Centre for Child & Youth Mental Health. “Across Canada, the demand for child and adolescent mental health services has exploded,” says Henuset. “In southern Alberta, the current system is stretched beyond capacity, and an estimated 60,000 children and teenagers in Calgary require mental health intervention in any given year. Families are forced to seek assistance through the emergency department as there is no service located in the community that can respond immediately. This is a substantial service gap.”
The vision for the new centre is to provide excellence in care and one-stop access to a walk-in clinic, intensive outpatient therapy and a community-based day hospital.
“With our Diamond Ball theme, glitz and glam will shine bright,” Henuset predicts. “As always, copious amounts of Taittinger champagne will be served and our favourite restaurants will be offering tasty morsels of unforgettable food. Men bring out your tux and tails and ladies it’s time to shimmer and sparkle for a night like no other!”
For more information or to purchase tickets, go to willowparkwines.com.