High Altitude Society: London Nights sets a royal aura to interfaith chapel fundraiser | VailDaily.com

High Altitude Society: London Nights sets a royal aura to interfaith chapel fundraiser

by Carolyn Pope
High Altitude Society

A different style of heavenly music filled the Edwards Interfaith Chapel and Community Center on Aug. 8 at the 7th annual Nights Gala, this year with a British theme, "London Nights."

Mezzo-soprano Jessica Medoff, the artistic director for the evening, harmonized along with baritone Peter Kendall Clark, tenor Dimitri Pittas and soprano Leah Edwards. The group of singers, accompanied by pianist Michael Bunchman, performed a range of songs from Broadway musicals to full blown opera.

A very creative way to raise money, guests had the opportunity to purchase a song with a dedication to their friends or family.

The evening was all about the operating fund for the church, which has a modest operating cost. Opened in 2010, many congregations utilize the chapel, including Mount of the Holy Cross Lutheran, Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration, B'nai Vail Jewish Congregation and Covenant Presbyterian. Over 30 nonprofits use the building for fundraisers, annual meetings, classes, therapy and support sessions, community dinners, cultural events, food banks and funeral services.

Prominent philanthropists Susan and Tom Washing were honored at the event. The couple has become an integral part of the community with their charitable activities in the area since 1980. Susan's vision was to create an annual fundraising event for the Edwards Chapel that would be unique from the other galas.

"Tom and Susan don't know how to fail," said Rev. Brooks Keith. "Wherever they go, the most vulnerable and threatened are always protected, everyone is elevated around them and their community is always better off with them than before they came."

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C.J. Tenner was also honored for his commitment to the Interfaith Chapel.

"C.J. served as the moral voice of the Edwards chapel board," added Brooks Keith.

The late Deacon Steve Baird and his wife, Karen, were acknowledged as well.

"They showed us how to love in a marriage, a community and the world," extolled Robert B. Egan, the president and acting treasurer of the Eagle Valley Religious Foundation.