By Erin L. Souza Posted April 15, 2011, 4:34 PM EDT
BOSTON Red Sox player Curt Schilling and his wife, Shonda, were among the 650 guests that filled the Mandarin Oriental Boston's ballroom and second-floor foyer for the Give Children a Chance gala on April 7. The event raised $750,000 for Massachusetts General Hospital's YouthCare program for children with Asperger's syndrome. The event this year adopted the dinner-drinks-auction model, and added an online auction that ran March 27 through April 10 to allow supporters to participate in the event, even if they could not attend.
At the event, three laptops sat on a table outside the ballroom for guests to browse and bid on items including artwork, tickets to Adele's May 15 performance at the House of Blues Boston, cupcake delivery, and clothing.
Planners skipped a seated dinner for most guests in favor of a cocktail reception with five food stations, at which servers offered grilled salmon and halibut and risotto. In the ballroom, corporate sponsors who donated at least $10,000 sat at a dozen dinner tables that offered up-close seats for the speaking program and post-dinner live auction. Guests outside the ballroom watched the speaking program on flat-panel televisions and could move into the ballroom for the live auction.
A bar with seating for about 15 anchored the reception space. Black, navy, and silver linens reflected the star theme present in signage and programs from Pro Print Boston; twinkling overhead lights and blue uplighting did the same in the ballroom. Desserts channeled the reason for the event: children. Servers passed chocolate chip cookies and small glasses of milk.