With the 2018 school year winding down and the gray of May serving as a misty farewell to spring, members of the Boys & Girls Club of Burbank and the Greater East Valley honored local educators and put out the welcome mat for summer as they presented their annual fundraising gala at Lakeside Golf Club last week.
Staged under the theme "Be True to Your School," the youth organization skipped its more traditional formal dinner and opted for an outdoor barbecue, offering supporters an evening of "good vibrations" and "fun, fun, fun" with a 1960s vibe, complete with the music of the Beach Boys tribute band, Surfin.'
Welcomed by Shanna Warren, the club's chief executive, and Matthew Poage, who chaired the event, an assemblage of close to 300 enjoyed the evening sponsored by Dave and Pat Augustine, along with local studio and business entities.
Among those on hand to honor the Burbank Unified School District, represented by Supt. Matt Hill, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Parochial Schools, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and Youth of the Year, Diana Yael Islas Perez, were U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff, state Sen. Anthony Portantino, Burbank Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, Vice Mayor Sharon Springer and Councilman Bob Frutos.
Other notables on hand included recently-selected City Councilman Tim Murphy, former Mayors Mary Lou Howard and Bill Wiggins, Burbank Chamber of Commerce chairman Gema Sanchez, local Boys & Girls Club president Paul Herman and the organization's vice president Leena Mathew.
Local club staff members who all pitched in to assure the event's success included Brittany Vaughan, Mira Shah, Susan Sebastian, Elizabeth Suzuki, Christan Rodriguez, Anita Nazarian, Angelique Vera, Ward Williams, Hayacharm Rios, Lupe Herrera, Jasmine Garcia, Sarah Schuhmann, Lianne Depino, Priscilla Galvan, Jay Jackson, Kyle Warren and Mike Graceffo.
Since 1995, the local Boys & Girls Club has touched the lives of thousands of local children and their families, providing regular programming as well as affordable after-school and summer programs.
With more than 1,600 kids being served on a daily basis at the club's main facility and its additional 18 local sites, a community and culture of caring has been created that has enabled members to participate in educational, athletic and artistic programs, including performing arts, homework assistance, tutoring, college prep and leadership training.
Always in need of financial support to continue and expand its low- and no-cost programs, donations can be made by visiting bgcburbank.org.