Vernon art gallery fundraiser draws sold-out crowd

33rd annual Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts Auction and Garden Party held outdoors at Mackie House

MORNING STAR STAFFJul. 18, 2019 1:48 p.m.

Rain? What rain?

The 33rd Annual Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts Fundraiser for the Vernon Public Art Gallery was held at Coldstream’s Mackie House Wednesday, July 17, and was a huge success. What started out as a gloomy and rainy day turned out to be a gorgeous sunny evening; a perfect setting for the fundraiser.

“What a great event! The rain gods created a protective bubble around our event and it was a lovely evening for an auction. Thank you to the 300+ crowd that came out and helped us raise more than $58,000,” said Dauna Kennedy, executive director of the art gallery.

“The support for the Vernon Public Art Gallery continues to grow and through that generosity, we are able to continue offering quality exhibitions and programs to the community we serve. Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts provides us with the funding required to maintain the solid operational foundation we have built as an organization while gradually expanding our institution as we work towards our new facility. It was an incredible event and Vernon Public Art Gallery is looking forward to next year already.”

Guests bid on 142 silent auction items and 42 pieces of original art in the live auction conducted by Valley Auction Ltd.’s Don Raffan. Although cowboy hats are not generally the chosen attire at Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts, Raffan’s live auction is an art form in itself and is entertainment for all.

Top sellers for the evening were Rick Bond’s painting, which sold for $3,900, and the Shuswap Getaway, donated by the Mund family, which sold for $3,500.

This event would not be possible without the generous contributions from volunteers, sponsors and donors. Once again, Bannister Honda was the presenting sponsor of the event. The Bannister team was once again front and centre with their vehicles providing shuttle service to and from the event. Nor-Val Rentals and Beach Radio were this year’s silver sponsors, while Printech, BDO, Ukrainetz WPLG and Avalon Event Rentals were bronze sponsors.

The event was catered by Gumtree Catering, Wedge Cheesery, Uprooted, and Olive Us. Drinks were provided by Summerhill Winery, Okanagan Springs Brewery, Upside Cider and Starbucks. Music was provided by Cody Rueger and set the mood for a beautiful garden party.

Jason Armstrong from Beach Radio emceed the event.

“The continued support we see through this event anchors our vision of growth in anticipation of our evolution towards our new gallery,” aid Kennedy. “We appreciate the trust of the community in us as an organization.”

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