Special Olympics of Miami-Dade County hosted its third annual “Sponsor an Athlete Awards Gala,” now already traditionally at the Mandarin Oriental Miami. Emmy Award-Winning actor and producer Vincent De Paul hosted this year’s event celebrating Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day with 500 elite guests from the organization’s community partners. The Sponsor an Athlete Awards Gala” provides an opportunity for Special Olympics Florida-Miami Dade County to recognize their most incredible Athletes, Coaches, Volunteers and Community Partners in Miami-Dade County while raising awareness and funds for their county program that serves over 4,000 children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
The evening kicked off with cocktail reception featuring live entertainment with the sounds of the University of Miami Frost School of Music as well as a high school band from Palmetto Senior High School. The gala also featured a live and silent auctions with items including a seven-day cruise for two on Norwegian Cruise Line’s newest ship, Norwegian Escape; a HDPE Race Car Driving Experience with Pro Tony Franco in a Corvette ZR1 Supercharged 638HP Rocket; one-to-one play and catch experience and a private hitting lesson with Mr. Marlin Jeff Conine; and a three-day Hard Rock Hotel & Casino stay to include a signed Kings of Chaos guitar with dining experiences at Oaks Steaks & Seafood and Kuro.
Guests and community partners in attendance included 123 LumpSum, the title sponsor for the third year in a row, Baptist Health South Florida, Ocean Drive magazine, The Miami Herald, Bank United, Bacardi, The Miami Marlins, The Orange Bowl Committee, Publix, Coca Cola, Holland & Knight, Smith & Wollensky, BB&T Bank, Miami Dade County Public Schools, McGladrey, Riviera and Gulliver Schools, to name a few.
Photos by: Elaina Lucia