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Summer Dream Fundraiser Helps Dream Foundation Fulfill Wishes of Terminally Ill

3rd annual benefit featuring fashion, music and more supports the mission of providing inspiration, comfort and closure at end of life


Dream Foundation, the only national dream-granting organization for terminally ill adults, hosted its third annual Summer Dream fundraiser at the elegant estate of Ursula and Patrick Nesbitt in Summerland.

The fresh-themed event had a little bit of something for everyone — a casual outdoor social hour around the pool and grounds, outdoor tables with interesting products, books and clothing, and a summer-themed fashion show featuring men’s and women’s clothing by Calypso St. Barth and UGG and local designers Catherine Gee, K. Frank, Lole, Miller’s Oath, Rocha Swim and Tropical Affair.

The proceeds will benefit dreamers ages 18 to 40 and support the Dream Foundation’s mission of touching lives, meeting essential needs, and providing inspiration, comfort and closure at the end of life.

Rounding out the June 3 fundraising event was live music performed by Gabe Reali and entertainment by the Aqualillies, a women’s synchronized swimming group that took advantage of the long lap pool overlooking the polo field.

Judi and Shari Zucker, local bestselling authors known as “The Double-Energy Twins,” had their new book, The Memory Diet, on display for signing at their booth. Plus, there were complimentary offerings courtesy of Patron Tequila, Summerland Winery, COFFEE Topa Topa, Heat Culinary and Rori’s Artisanal Creamery.

KEYT News chief meteorologist and longtime Dream Foundation supporter Alan Rose served as emcee again this year. Rose welcomed the crowd of 300 supporters and recognized event chairwoman Arlene Montesano for her support and dedication to the foundation and for her leadership for this year’s event.

“One hundred percent of the proceeds of Summer Dream are allocated to fulfill the dreams of terminally ill young adults,” Montesano said. “Working with Dream Foundation and chairing this event has been a labor of love for me.”

Summer Dream sponsors included Golden Sponsors: Belle and Daniel Cohen, The Little Ones Foundation, Hutton Parker Foundation, Soogie and Don Kang, and Jim Nigro; Shine Sponsors: Eric Early, Nina and Eric Phillips, Elizabeth and Kenny Slaught, and Sun Potion; Copper Sponsors: Alex Early, Chris Lancashire and The Early Air Way; and Aqua Sponsors: Ann and Richard Schoenberg, B-Low The Belt, the Grokenberger family, and Hollye and Jeff Jacobs. Event in-kind sponsors included Aqualillies, Blue Star Parking, Heat Culinary, Ursula and Pat Nesbitt, Patron Tequila, Summerland Winery and Sun Potion.

“Summer Dream is a wonderful event to educate our local community about our mission, goals and, most important, our dreamers,” Dream Foundation CEO Kisa Heyer said.

“Many are surprised to learn that almost 20 percent of our dreamers are between the ages of 18 and 40. We hope this illumination will lead to a greater understanding and urgency to support Dream Foundation and final dreams that are providing inspiration, comfort and closure to thousands each year.”

Dani Cordaro, public relations spokeswoman for the foundation, said the event exceeded its fundraising goal.

Part of the proceeds came from a raffle and silent auction sales of items and services donated by the Beverly Hills Hotel, Dicker and Dicker of Beverly Hills, Bacara Resort & Spa, Los Establos Boutique Hotel in Boquete, Panama, from Elite Island Resorts and Lisa Yabsley, and others.

Dream Foundation fulfills final dreams that provide inspiration, comfort and closure at the end of life. With the support of a nationwide network of volunteers, hospices, health-care organizations and committed donors, Dream Foundation has given life to more than 27,000 final dreams in the past 20 years and has never turned down a qualified applicant.

The foundation maintains Charity Navigator’s highest four-star rating for sound fiscal management. It receives no state or federal funding and relies solely on private donations.

Click here for more information about the Dream Foundation. Click here to make an online donation.

Noozhawk contributing writer Rochelle Rose can be reached at [email protected]. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkSociety, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

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