High Altitude Society column: Starry Night holiday wine tasting benefits St. Clare of Assisi Catholic School | VailDaily.com

High Altitude Society column: Starry Night holiday wine tasting benefits St. Clare of Assisi Catholic School

St. Clare of Assisi Catholic School held its annual Starry Night holiday wine and gourmet food tasting on Friday, at Maya restaurant in The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in Avon. There were premium wines from across the globe, including Italy, France, Spain, South America, Australia, Oregon and, of course, California.

Classical guitarist Eric Nohe played during the early hours, setting the tone for the warm and welcoming ambiance in the elegant Maya restaurant. The silent auction was full of items to support the school community, and guests could purchase a star to help make a teacher’s wish list come true.

Probably one of the more extraordinary tales of the evening is how the Rev. Jude won the wine pull blind draw for the second year in a row. Gina Demarest, who has been St. Clare’s director of development and will transition to the administrative assistant position this year, told the story.

“Last year, we chose the first donated wine bottle and numbered it as the winning number. Father Jude bought the last bottle in the wine pull that night and won the trip to Palm Springs,” she said. “Again, this year he bought the last several tickets and won the week stay in a luxury condo in sunny Palm Springs, California.”

Call it good fortune or divine intervention? Enjoy your stay, Rev. Jude.

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Evening to remember

Other incredible auction items included a one-year membership at the Vail Gondola Club, chef’s dinner at Northside Kitchen, Epic passes, Uvex gear, items from Generation Kids, Vail and Beaver Creek, Perch, Skipper & Scout, a Frost Creek homestay and dinner with wine pairings, box seats at the Vilar Performing Arts Center for the Christmas pageant and Christmas Eve Mass, a dinner prepared by Game Creek Club Executive Chef Steven Topple and an in-home, multi-course dinner for eight prepared by St. Clare parent Paul Anders, executive chef and owner of Sweet Basil and Mountain Standard,.

Event co-chairs Gina Demarest and Amy Kisielica worked tirelessly on this special Starry Night fundraiser and thanked their hard-working volunteers, sponsors, auction item donors and, especially, Avon Liquor for all of their support. Huge gratitude from the St. Clare community went out to Amy and Steve Kisielica, Jen and Jeff Beuche, Theresa and Paul Anders, Murray’s Cheese, Kiwi International Delights, Hovey & Harrison, Brandon Causey, Topple and, of course, Maya restaurant and the Vail Daily.

Betty Ann Woodland is a longtime local who covers social events including fundraisers for nonprofits, local events and soirees of all kinds. She can be reached at bettyannw6@gmail.com.

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