American Cancer Society 100th Anniversary Celebration at Eden Gardens in Moorpark

photo (29)By George Miller

The American Cancer Society held a big bash Saturday night, August 17, to celebrate a century of success, congratulate/reward regional movers, shakers and supporters and raise LOTS of $$$ for the Cause- reputedly about $200,000. The theme was “Starry, Starry Night.”  Over 300 people attended the event, which was held at tony “Eden Gardens” in Moorpark, a new outdoor venue eagerly sought for weddings, parties, meetings, etc.

Chaired by Marty Robinson and Kris Carraway Bowman and Directed by Sandy Berg of the American Cancer Society, the event was staffed by a committee of over 60 people and headlined by Emcee Dr. Michael Guillen (former ABC News Science Editor, Emmy winner, Physicist), Honorary Chairs Betsy Bourne and Ron Polanski, Honoree Kathy Long (A Ventura County Supervisor), singer William Kappen, and more.

Numerous supporters were in evidence, most prominently AMGEN, Coastal Radiation Oncology Medical Group, Los Robles Hospiatal/Medical Center, Marty and Tom Robinson,  UCLA Health, Union Bank, Westlake Village Inn  and many others- really too many to mention them all here.

Thanks also to the executive committee of Emma Montes (full time volunteer and wife of Radiation Oncologist Dr. Henry Montes and Camarillo resident) who chaired the auction committee, Marni Brook (Ventura Community President of Montecito Bank & Trust and resident of Ventura) who chaired sponsorship and Lynda Bowman (retired Verizon senior executive and Lake Sherwood resident), who chaired the logistics and décor.  They put in hundreds (maybe thousands) of hours to make it a beautiful and successful event.  

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Just past the registration table were caged rare birds situated along a forested path, beautiful landscaping, lighted fountains, trees and shrubbery, people of note in health care, politics, industry, philanthropy, in evidence everywhere. Green apple martinis waited for guests.  The affair was very well catered by Command Performance and we assure you that it was first class all the way.  We estimate that attendees got half of their $200 per head back in food, drink, facilities, entertainment etc., while the rest went for an excellent cause.
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A stunning number of very nice donated items were sold off from seemingly endless tables (interspersed with waiters bearing delicious hors d’oerves) loaded with silent auction items and many more auctioned off in the traditional manner, with Ken Caldwell chanting auction talk a mile a minute. Not only was it entertaining, but he collected  a small fortune in bids in not very much time.  The guests were entertained at the sponsor reception and lakeside by the jazz group Roux 42, led by saxophonist Brandon Ragan, then later serenaded by William Kappen at dinner.  EdenSongMovie


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The American Cancer Society is a revered institution. It has helped keep the fight against cancer in the forefront of national priorities, raised countless millions for research and treatment.  One thing that became evident from hearing the speakers and  conversations with attendees, virtually everyone had friends, relatives, co-workers, who were stricken with cancer, maybe died horribly, or struggled and beat it with a battle, often assisted by medical personnel and laymen.  You, too can contribute to their good works.

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No lack of fine items to bid on.

George Miller is a Citizens Journalist, retired management consultant, very active in civic affairs, residing in Oxnard.

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