“Rocket to 1964” was the theme for the 50th Beaux Arts Ball, held March 8 at The Country Club at Mirasol in Palm Beach Gardens, giving a nod to the emerging aeronautical industry in the area as well as recalling the art scene, music and fashion of the era. The Ball raised more than $100,000 for the ArtCenter.
“The rocket in ‘Rocket to 1964’ was a metaphor on several counts. In celebrating the Lighthouse ArtCenter's 50th year we wanted to reference some of the very real technological, geo-political, and pop culture elements that were very real in our communities at the time,” said Chair Sam Plummer. ”We had pop art and Andy Warhol look-alikes galore, and of course what early ’60s party would be complete without the music of the Beatles, Beach Boys and Motown?”
“In these times, people who care about the arts must take leadership roles in ensuring that arts organizations survive,” said Katie Deits, executive director of the ArtCenter. “Our chairs, Sam and Jill Plummer, who grew up being involved with the ArtCenter, had the vision for this 50th anniversary gala and put in the hard work to make this such a successful event. We are so grateful to all who worked so hard to make the ball a financial success that was also wonderfully fun for the guests.”
The annual Shine Award, given to a volunteer who has gone above and beyond for the ArtCenter, was given to Gerri Aurre, a talented artist and long-time member who has volunteered for many committees, created countless paintings, sculptures and centerpieces for our events and is a ceaseless and much-appreciated supporter of the ArtCenter. Pat Crowley, a Lighthouse ArtCenter faculty member, received the Wally Bates award for his generous contributions over the years in support of the ArtCenter, including chairing the 125 Club event, serving on many committees and being a creative force behind our major events. Ted Matz, head of painting and drawing for the ArtCenter, received the Executive Director’s Award, for donating his time and talents to many of our school programs and Chairing the first annual Plein Air Festival to be held March 20-24, 2014.
“Artists creatively painted palettes for the silent auction,” Ms. Deits said. “It truly was an opportunity to showcase the talent our museum attracts. And perhaps that is what we are most proud of, along with our programs, classes and children’s ArtCamps. The money raised at the ball will help support these programs and guests donated generously to our children’s scholarship fund.”
There were wealth of auction items on which patrons could bid, including a photograph of President Reagan’s last moment in office by Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Stephen Crowley, a bronze sculpture by renowned artist Luis Montoya, a painting by Leslie Ortiz, a political cartoon by Pat Crowley and many gift certificates generously donated by local restaurants and businesses. Theresa Wood chaired the silent auction committee.
“It was a fun and successful event brought together by wonderful chairs and a terrific committee. It was truly a collaboration of many people, including our dedicated volunteers, and we are so fortunate to have their support,” said Sheila McDonald-Bell, director of events for the ArtCenter.