Vail Mountain School’s Starry Night Gala is a showstopper |

Vail Mountain School’s Starry Night Gala is a showstopper

Betty Ann Woodland
High Altitude Society
Vail, CO Colorado
Vail Society: Nancy Young, Nancy Cole, Peter Abuisi, VMS Liaison Robin Litt

VAIL, Colorado –Saturday evening, right on schedule, an intense winter storm greeted event-goers to Vail Mountain School’s 34th annual Holiday Gala and Auction.

As in many other years, heavy snow pelted the guests and valets as show time began. Certainly this is not necessarily a bad thing, as we need the snow to start up the ski season. And the pretty white carpet does have a way of making things feel fresh and new.

Speaking of white carpets, Ruggs Benedict installed an enormous one in the gymnasium to help transform the space into a glorious ballroom.

It took a huge number of volunteer hours to create the ambiance of “A Starry Night,” a theme taken from Van Gogh’s French landscape and adapted by middle-schooler Billy Mitchell, as seen on the gala’s program cover.

If the effect of the school’s transformation was to escape the ordinary, then it was highly successful. And escapism while doing charitable philanthropy is an especially feel good affair.

There were no fewer than 16 live auction items, including everything from eight nights in a vintage cottage on Kauai, to an escape to San Francisco and Sonoma wine country, to a first class trip to the Grand Luxury hotel in Cancun complete with two day-trips on a fully staffed yacht,generously donated by parents Alejandro and Matilde Marti, Tomas and Alejandro Milmo and Juan Carlos and Norma Aziz.

There were too many auction item contributions from Vail Mountain School families and friends to mention here. Suffice it to say there was an abundance of generosity.

The holiday gala team did a tremendous job of orchestrating a phenomenal event. Pink Monkey Solutions added spectacular touches with lighting and sound. Enormous red, yellow and gold illuminated stars hung from the ceiling, sparkling centerpieces greeted guests at the beautifully set tables.

And, of course, there are the gorgeous attendees who add charm and decor themselves.

Renie and David Gorsuch and sons arrived out of the snowy night looking like they just stepped out of their stunning catalogue.

Co-chair of the event Nancy Cole looked elegant in her pale pistachio colored silk satin gown. She photographed portraits of the first-graders to help raise funds for the school.

School corridors were lined with impressive individual and class art projects for perusal and auction.

School Chef Forrest Knapp and Chef Eric Berg of Vail Catering Concepts wined and dined the crowd. The Jonny Mogambo Band rocked the schoolhouse.

All told, the Vail Mountain School Starry Night Gala could be the start to an impressive holiday season of sharing, caring,and loving life in the Vail Valley.

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