Following the success of the very first winter wonderland themed fundraiser, Langley City Mayor Val van den Broek said holding another one next year is being considered.
“It was so successful, it’s hard to say no to doing it again,” van den Broek told the Langley Advance Times following the Saturday, Jan. 25, event at the Langley Cascades Casino Resort to raise funds for the Langley Memorial Hospital (LMH) Foundation.
About a week after it was announced, the event was completely sold out, so more tables were added.
“The community support has been absolutely amazing,” van den Broek enthused.
While an exact tally will not be known for at least a week, because more donations are coming in, a very rough preliminary estimate places the amount at more than $30,000.
About $18,000 was raised through gala tickets, plus an anonymous $10,000 donation and a $2,500 gift by the casino.
The event was a tribute to the mayor’s late mother, Pauline Audet, who had three open heart surgeries.
“She fundraised a lot for the Open Heart Society, and I figure it’s my time to take over fundraising,” van den Broek shared.
“She loved snow, so that’s why we have a winter wonderland theme.
“We have lemon meringue pie for dessert, because she made a mean lemon meringue.
“The music is all her favourite music, the fresh flowers [are because] she loved gardening,” van den Broek explained.
The gala was in partnership with the RCMP.
When van den Broek thought about holding a mayor’s gala, and was pondering community partners, she saw the local police as “a natural fit.”
She first started as a volunteer with the Langley RCMP in 2001 and a few years later joined the civilian staff.
It was a chance for officers to dress up in red serge, and for civilians to dress in their best formal wear.
Following a cocktail reception with wintry-blue drinks, there was dinner, live and silent auctions, and dancing to the music of Langley’s “The Damn Chandeliers.”
Among those who attended were Langley’s Officer in charge, RCMP Supt. Murray Power, former Langley City mayor Ted Schaffer, Langley MLA Mary Polak , who served as M.C. and Langley-Cloverdale M.P. Tamara Jansen, to name just a few.
More photos of people at the event can seen online.