Best Event For Nonprofit Organization (tie)

Mary Anne London, Wow! Evens by Kraus-Anderson, for Passage to India
Best Event For Nonprofit Organization (tie)

A fundraising event for the Metropolitan Economic Development Association employed “an adventure to India” as its theme. India’s rich traditions provided many ideas for event elements:

• The custom-built archway over the event entrance was reminiscent of the Taj Mahal.

• Costumed volunteers greeted guests and offered women traditional bindhis to wear.

• A custom-built canopy over the silent auction area evoked an Indian street market.

• Tables were dressed with fuschia, turquoise, and orange linens.

• Entertainment included sitar and tabla musicians, fortune tellers, henna mendhi artists, and an Indian-dance group.

The “Raja Table,” a preferred seating option for guests, featured upgraded wine service, gold and teal linens, orchids, gold charger plates, peacock feathers, and a take-home gift of curry in a golden drawstring bag.

The lower-than-expected number of sponsorship commitments required cutbacks in the decor budget, but planners were able to make strategic cuts and borrow key decor items to meet the shortfall. The event still netted a significant amount of funding for the association.

Other nominees:

• Meghan Gustafson, The Basilica of Saint Mary; Michael Feldbaum and Jenny Nicpon, Aprés Party and Tent Rental

• Jim Leighton, Children’s Cancer Research Fund; Ryan Hanson, BeEvents; Amy Oriani, Martin Bastian Productions