Everglades Gala Raises the Green

Irma Anapol, Ron Bergeron

Irma Anapol, Ron Bergeron

PALM BEACH, FL– Black ties turned into green at the seventh-annual “River of Grass Gala,” which raised almost $100,000 for Everglades education programs.

More than 200 supporters turned out at The Colony Hotel for the “green tie” program chaired by Jenny Prior Brown, and Matthew and Thais Piotrowski. Kathryn Fox served as honorary chair.

Nancy and John Marshall

Nancy and John Marshall

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar; Ron Bergeron, a business leader, Everglades enthusiast and member of the Florida Wildlife Commission; and the Florida Wildlife Federation, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary, all were recognized as “Champions of the Everglades” during the program.

The fifth-annual awards are presented by the Arthur R. Marshall Foundation for the Everglades. Honorees are individuals or groups that have made outstanding contributions over many years toward restoring the Everglades.

Nancy Marshall, president of the Marshall Foundation, which champions the restoration and preservation of the greater Everglades ecosystem, said the nonprofit organization raised about $100,000 at the seventh annual gala.

A highlight of the gala, held Dec. 8, 2012, was the surprise performance by Avery Sommers, former Broadway and motion picture star, who performed a musical tribute to Marvin Hamlisch, Whitney Houston and Donna Summer.

Click photos to enlarge.

“As always, I am humbled by the number of people who tirelessly volunteer, sponsor and support our annual River of Grass Gala that funds 100 percent of our grassroots environmental projects throughout the year,” said Nancy Marshall. “In fact, 100 percent of all funds raised at the gala goes directly toward educating the next generation about the critical importance of the Everglades, our national treasure, on the entire state of Florida.”

The Marshall Foundation, founded in 1998, has awarded more than $450,000 in scholarships and internships, planted nearly 100,000 native Florida trees in wetland areas and involved more than 5,000 volunteers in hands-on restoration projects. Annually, more than 25,000 elementary and high school students in Palm Beach County actively participate in the Marshall Foundation’s various education programs.

For more information, call (561) 233-9004 or visit www.artmarshall.org.

Photos by Corby Kaye’s Studio Palm Beach.

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