Patrick Matiowski

Langley rolls out the red carpet for Silver Screen extravaganza

Langley Hospice-Langley Lodge ‘Come as they were’ fundraiser promises to be a blast to the past

Marilyn Monroe, James Dean and Judy Garland, oh my!

‘Old Hollywood’ will soon be strutting into town and Langley is ready to roll out the red carpet.

On Saturday, Oct. 18, a Silver Screen Gala is coming to Cascades Casino and Convention Centre — an unforgettable fête that will include dinner, a live and silent auction, sizzling entertainment by renowned celebrity impersonator Tracey Bell and special guest Carmen Ruiz y Laza of Carmen TV.

In addition to being a costume party with a ‘come as they were’ theme, this blast to the past will benefit the Langley Lodge and the Langley Hospice Society (LHS) in their first ever joint gala.

Funds raised from the event will be split evenly between the charities.

“Together, I believe that we can be more efficient, more effective and — ultimately — better serve the community,” said Terry Metcalfe, president of the Langley Care Society (LCS) and Langley Care Foundation (LCF).

The Langley Care Society is the not-for-profit owner/operator of Langley Lodge — a complex health care facility with 139 residents, that’s celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. The Langley Care Foundation is the fundraising arm for the LCS.

“We have been actively fundraising for six years now, and seek to enhance the quality of life of the elderly in Langley,” said Metcalfe.

The idea of a combined event with net proceeds split 50/50, seemed like a natural fit, notes Metcalfe.

“There is an opportunity to be more successful than either of us could do alone,” he said.

In 2013, the Langley Care Foundation raised close to $26,000 net from their gala event. This year, Metcalfe says they’re aiming to double that figure.

For the Langley Hospice Society, the partnership just made perfect dollars and sense.

“This year we are hoping that our participation with them will help to double the attendance at the event and significantly increase the funds raised,” said Kathy Derksen, president of the LHS, also noting that the gala isn’t just about raising their profile in the community.

For the Langley Hospice Society, their fundraising events and galas provide funds to help them provide important palliative care and bereavement support programs, to the more than 5,000 people who access their services, free of charge, each year.

“They provide us with a source of funding to help us continue our mission to provide our ongoing compassionate support to help people live with dignity and hope while coping with grief and end of life,” she said.

And while the party hasn’t officially started, the team of volunteers planning behind the scenes working diligently to coordinate the gala are already having fun.

“It’s been an amazing experience from the beginning, both the partnership between to the two organizations and the response from volunteers when invited to be part of it,” said Shannon Todd Booth,  acting Executive Director of the LHS.

“Individuals who willingly embrace the opportunity and the roles they take on…many hands make light work, but the gift of time and talent — that’s really brings heart to the experience.

A passionate and engaged committee, along with the amazing contributions from our event sponsors and supporters will ensure a quality experience for all our guests.”

Sponsorship spots are filling up fast, however, the gala committee still has space for anyone wanting to support the event, notes Todd Booth.

“We have some great opportunities to support the event on a variety of levels from items for the ‘swag bags’ and table sponsors, to the silent and live auctions on the night of.

Sponsorship and donations are gratefully accepted.

Todd Booth admits she isn’t quite sure which ‘Old Hollywood’ celeb she plans to channel yet, but award-winning entertainer Tracey Bell who will be headlining the gala, has her attire covered.

Bell will be changing wigs and costumes in seconds to become show business legends Marilyn  Monroe, Liza Minnelli, Cher and more.

Previously recognized as the 2005 Canadian Special Event Industry’s “Entertainer of the Year” and the 2009 BC Event Industry Awards,’ Entertainer of the Year,’ Bell performs internationally at private corporate events, charity galas and in billionaires’ homes, and is celebrating more than 25 years as an entertainment entrepreneur in the special events industry.

“I’m honoured to raise awareness for both of these important Langley organizations,” she said.

“I hope the guests enjoy dressing up and playing along as much as I do.”

For those still in need of a costume, Hallowville Manor, located at 20568 56 Ave. is generously donating all proceeds of costume rentals for the Silver Screen Gala to the Langley Hospice and Langley Lodge. Tickets to the gala are $125 each.

For more information, or to purchase tickets, visit www.langleylodge.org/fundraising/events or call 604-530-1115 or 604-880-6752.

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