Visitors literally dug for 'diamonds' as part of the gala evening's events.

Innovation key to growing the gala

New ideas generate extra money for the hospital foundation.

Walking into any gala event, guests expect there will be a silent auction, possibly a live auction, and usually some other themed raffle or fundraising initiative.

For the Langley Memorial Hospital Foundation, which has been serving the community for more than 30 years, the annual Denim & Diamonds gala is no exception to this rule.

Event organizers count on sponsors to help defray much of the cost of putting on such an event, while they rely on ticket sales and fundraising initiatives during the gala to bring in cash for the cause.

In the case of the hospital foundation, and Saturday’s largest ever gala, it was a mix of all the traditional aspects of the event, sprinkled with a few new ideas, that pushed them to one of the largest fundraising totals in the organization’s history, said foundation spokesperson Errin Young.

Saturday’s live auction – with seven packages on the selling block – brought in more than $50,000. A fishing package garnered $6,000 over the retail price of $8,500.

And Young pointed out that two of the prize donors – present at the event – agreed to give another prize to the runner-up bidders, if they’d match the top bid. In this case, that was both a Sailing Vancouver cruise for six, and the Local Gourmet four-course meal for 12.

There was also a silent auction, and donations collected at the tables, plus the event’s trademark Diamond Dig – where guests pay $20 for a chance to dig through  giant sandbox for a “fake” diamond and chances to win prizes, including the opportunity to take home a $1,350 blue sapphire and diamond ring. This year, that piece of jewelry, donated by Golden Tree, was won by Deborah Benson.

But new to the fundraising arena this year, the foundation auctioned off the rights for one table of guests to move up to the front, to a VIP table.

That table alone generated an additional $5,750, which Young said was a “huge” boost.

But the surprise, organizers say, this year was the generosity and popularity to a mock operating room set up where people could witness, touch, and even try out pieces of surgical equipment, then purchase a number of surgical tools from the OR wishlist.



Just Posted

Brookswood’s Forsyth back to Langley for basketball meet

The Bobcat alumnus and her team will take on last year’s champs Notre Dame.

Student entrepreneurs spotlighted at Fort Langley event

Take part in a talk on problem-solving, creativity, critical thinking and social responsibility.

Historic Fort Langley remembers James Douglas and Louis Riel

Annual weekend events draw hundreds to site

Aldergrove hairdressers go wild and crazy

Students show off skills they’ve learned in the career program at ACSS

Langley school pulls Japanese ‘rising sun’ flag after student petition

School district promises consultation with students and parents, defends using flag for war history

Six students arrested, charged in sex assault probe at Toronto all-boys school

The school’s principal, Greg Reeves, described the video of the alleged sexual assault as ‘horrific’

Laine scores 3 as Jets double Canucks 6-3

Injury-riddled Vancouver side drops sixth in a row

Deportation averted for Putin critic who feared return to Russia

Elena Musikhina, a vocal critic of the Kremlin, has been granted a two-year visitor’s permit in Canada

B.C. to allow Uber-style ride hailing services to operate in late 2019

Fee will be applied to fund options for disabled people

Auditor general takes aim at Liberals’ fighter-jet plan

Suditor general Michael Ferguson is about to release a new report on Canada’s attempts to buy new fighter jets

B.C. couple converts ambulance into a traveling home

The Revelstoke couple plan on touring B.C. ski hills then driving to Mexico

Cyclist defecates, throws own poop at car following B.C. crash

Man defecates in the street before throwing it at a driver locked in her vehicle

Second person dies following head-on collision in Surrey

Paige Nagata of Abbotsford was in crash on Nov. 4 that also killed maternity nurse

11 years sought for Burnaby man who killed girlfriend with hammer, burned her body

Manslaughter sentencing hearing started Monday in Chilliwack for Ryan Armstrong

Most Read