Friends Gala Happening This Weekend

Red Carpet

Friends of VI National Park Annual Gala will be held on Saturday, February 7, 2015 and tickets are selling fast for the “gala of galas” on St. John. Join Friends for an elegant evening as it recognizes its achievements and celebrate the wonders of the VI National Park.

The gala is being hosted by Steven & Pamela Deckoff at their beautiful home, “Presidio del Mar” in Peter Bay, where a red carpet and white roses will welcome guests to the gala. Cocktails and passed hors d’oeuvres begin at 6 pm and continue all night, including stations for carved meats, seafood and gourmet cheeses. A pastry chef will create fabulous desserts. This year’s wines are top notch and wine enthusiats will not want to miss the fine wines that flow start to finish. The gala will feature an encore performance of our very own local “In the Sand Band”. Aged rums, homemade truffles and fine cigars will be offered at a “Taste of History” bar. A lively Master of Ceremonies will enhance the evening and the St. John Photo Booth will be there for fun photos of gala guests.

The fabulous Friends raffle featuring items from local vendors and several special silent auction items will cap off the event. The top silent auction item is a 7-night stay at a 3-bedroom Ritz-Carlton residence in Vail valued at $15,000. Bids for this item only can be placed without attendance at the gala by calling the Friends office at (340) 779-4940. Please call for more info and property descriptions.

There is also a special limited ticket jewelry raffle of a 14k red gold heart pendant, made by KABANA and donated by R&I PATTON at Mongoose Junction on St John, is inlayed with extra fine quality Bronze Mother of Pearl and set with 0.90ctw Diamonds. The value for this pendant is $3,469. It can be seen at R&I PATTON until the Gala on February 7, 2015. Only 100 tickets will be sold.

Tickets are $250, and may be purchased at Connections and the Friends of the Park Store, or by calling Friends at 779-4940. A champagne shuttle service and parking will be available at the Trunk Bay parking lot starting at 6 pm. St. Thomas guests will be provided shuttle service from the Cruz Bay Ferry dock at 6:20 p.m. and 7:20 p.m. Cruz Bay guests can park at the national park maintenance lot and take a free shuttle to the gala at 6:30 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. Shuttles return to Cruz Bay in time for the 10 p.m. and 11 p.m. ferries.

Can’t make it? Raffle tickets may be purchased in advance! $25 each or 5 for $100 at the same locations. The raffle prizes are significant and the odds are good.

3 thoughts on “Friends Gala Happening This Weekend”

  1. Yet another reason i stopped giving to the “friends”. Have a your “gala” when normal people who donate (sometimes substantial amounts) can actually afford to attend ..a.k.a. Not high season.

    Imagine all that money blown on a party for hedgies in peter bay going towards, i dont know … Improving and maintaining moorings so the nat park doesnt have to hike fees?

  2. The Friends Gala, and other similar events, is admittedly not for everyone, whether or not they can afford the ticket price. However, there are a substantial number of people who do enjoy these events and this has led to the success of our gala and those for JESS, Gifft Hill School, the ACC, and others.

    The primary purpose of this event is to raise funds and raise friends to support the good work that we do in support of the park and the community. The important thing is what we do with the funds raised from this event, and other fundraising activities. I regret that Mike S. no longer supports the Friends but I encourage him, and other interested readers, to visit our website and learn about the substantial work that we do. In any given year we invest $500,000 to $600,000 in projects and activities that advance natural resource protection, cultural resource preservation, scientific research, and environmental education in the park.

    Since Mike S. raised the issue of moorings, it is worth noting that the Friends invested almost $650,000 to install about 340 overnight, day-use, and storm moorings in the park and monument. While we were pleased to be able provide this protection to park resources, the sustainability of the mooring system depends on the NPS maintaining the system in perpetuity. Those that use the system should contribute to its maintenance, repair and eventual replacement.

    I would welcome anyone with further questions about either of these issues (or anything else related to the Friends) to contact me at 340-779-4940

    Joe Kessler, President
    Friends of VI National Park

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