Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade celebrated its annual black-tie “Wild About Kids” Gala, with a Motown theme, at Loews Coral Gables Hotel on Saturday, Oct. 28, 2023. The event raised over $600K for Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade’s crucial programs and services at its six Clubs and sites combined including its educational after school programs, tutoring and homework assistance, STEM, social skills, dance, arts and crafts, mentoring and summer and athletic programs. These programs help children realize their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens.
The 15th Annual “Wild About Kids” Gala was co-chaired once again by long-time Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade supporters, Board Chair Andy Stuart and his wife Allison Stuart, a Board of Directors member. Olga Guilarte, member of Boys & Girls of Miami-Dade’s Executive Committee, was once again the special event chair.
South Florida’s top community leaders, philanthropists and influencers were among the guests who were transported back to the Motown era with dinner, dancing, live entertainment, an engaging program and more to support great futures for Miami-Dade area youth.
Eight-time Emmy award-winning journalist and WSVN Channel 7 news personality Belkys Nerey and youth member Sebastian Garcia co-emceed the event and helped engage and energize the crowd. The SweetTarts, DJ Sama alongside Carlos Oliva y Los Sobrinos del Juez Band provided the soundtrack for the evening with classic hits from the Motown era including Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross and The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations, The Jackson 5 and more. Guests also enjoyed a unique Motown-themed musical performance from Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade’s youth members.
During the event, Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade honored notable alumni, inducting them into the Class of 2023 Alumni Hall of Fame, including Miami-Dade Public Schools Board Member for District 1, Dr. Steve Gallon III, Mayor of Miami Gardens Rodney Harris, WNBA Player Erica Wheeler and Actor Alex Livinalli. Each alumnus shared personal stories about their experiences with the Club.
Supporters also participated in a special opportunity to sponsor-a-child through donations and a silent auction featuring high-end items and exceptional luxury experiences ranging from elegant jewelry, memorabilia, lifestyle experiences, unique travel opportunities and more. Through the generous support of sponsors, hundreds of area youth were granted a one-year fully-paid membership to Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade.
“We are incredibly humbled by the support from all those who joined us for our 15th Annual ‘Wild About Kids’ Gala at Loews Coral Gables Hotel with the Motown theme,” said Alex Rodriguez-Roig, president of Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade. “The incredible evening wouldn’t be possible without our returning co-chairs Andy and Allison Stuart, our board members, sponsors and donors who are committed to providing great futures for our area youth. The annual event helps us raise funds to serve the Clubs’ many positive programs, support the Capital Campaign to completely rebuild the Northwest Club into a state-of-the-art facility and expand the new sixth Club.”
“Allison and I were honored to return as co-chairs for Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade’s most significant fundraiser of the year. The Club and the youth members are very near and dear to our hearts,” said Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade Board Chair Andy Stuart. “Supporters enjoyed an exceptional evening of entertainment, dancing and dinner while raising crucial funds for the Clubs’ many positive programs.”
Gala committee members from Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade’s Board of Directors included Tom Bezold, Liana De Mena, Jackie Gonzalez, Maria Luisa Gonzalez, Rudy Lleonart, Yuni Navarro, Kristina Perez-Cubas, Karen Rodriguez and Richard Rodriguez. Additional committee members included Susan Abraham, Lisa Mendelson, Lily Pardo, Durée Ross, Marianne Schmidhofer, Rae Stein, Meredith Virnig and Michelle Zubizarreta.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade thank the sponsors for their generous support. The Carmen Rebozo Foundation was The Supremes sponsor. The Four Tops sponsors were the Ansin Foundation Inc./WSVN 7 and Andrew and Allison Stuart, and The Miracles sponsors were Ocean Bank, Thoma Bravo and DRRT. The Jackson 5 sponsors included Academica, Anthony R. Abraham Foundation, Baptist Health South Florida, Bermont Gold Wealth Advisory of Raymond James, Blue Streak LLC, & CCU, LLC, First American Bank & Rodolfo Lleonart, Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, Ana and Raul Marmol, Lisa and Victor Mendelson Family, Somos Group, USI Insurance and Meredith and Kenneth Virnig. In-kind sponsors included Bacardi U.S.A., Inc., Total Wine & More, The Fudge Pie Co. and WSVN 7. Underwriters included the Bernhardt Family, Florida Physicians PSN, InterJuris, Bob Parks, Greta & Mark Walker Foundation and Tasco.
For more information, please visit www.bgcmia.org.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade
Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade has been serving youth in the community since 1946. What once was a single building and site for boys has grown to six Clubs and sites combined serving thousands of boys and girls year-round, providing programs in the areas of character and leadership development, educational enhancement, career preparation, health and life skills, cultural arts and sports, fitness and recreation. Club staffing, initiatives, and programs are designed to inspire and enable area youth and provide them with the resources to succeed and share in the American Dream. For more information, please visit www.bgcmia.org, facebook.com/BoysGirlsClubsMiamiDade, instagram.com/bgcmiamidade, twitter.com/BGCMia, youtube.com/user/BGCMiamiDade, or call 305.446.9910.