Gala executive director handles misstep with GRACE

Posted Monday, Oct. 28, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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I believe it was Oscar Wilde who said, “No good deed goes unpunished.” Well if you ask GRACE Executive Director Shonda Schaefer, she might agree.

There is no argument that the “good deed” part comes from all the amazing work done by GRACE in helping individuals who are going through difficult times. However, the “good deed” I am talking about is the GRACE Gala that Schaefer has overseen, along with the incredible past event chairs, for many years.

This year, right after Schaefer addressed the event’s attendees and thanked them for their generosity (the good deed I am referring to), she announced that it was time for the dance. As she stepped on the dance floor and began to dance with her husband, unfortunately and truly by accident, he stepped on her toe. That alone may have just been a party faux pas, but sadly that misstep broke her toe in three places (hence the unpunished part).

Now if you were there and are thinking you never noticed that Schaefer looked as if she was in pain, that is just the trooper she is. She kept on going until after the fundraiser, never missing a step. OK, too early for this pun?

I can attest that Schaefer is healing quite well and was seen 10 days later at the VIP reception for the 2013 Shining Stars wearing a pair of smashing boots. OK, the boots were low heeled, but very fashionable nonetheless!

Shining Stars

The Arts League of Arts Council Northeast held its 2013 Shining Stars VIP reception recently and I have to say the best part of this event was seeing the amazing women chosen to receive this year’s outstanding honor, as well as the staff at Macy’s.

First of all, applause to you, the staff at the North East Mall Macy’s. This event was held in the courtyard area inside the mall just outside of the mall entrance to Macy’s.

Attendees at the Oct. 20 reception had to enter by way of Macy’s to get to where the event was held.

The staff at Macy’s was spot-on perfect. One person welcomed guests at the door. After a guest entered the store, the staff person immediately called another staff person over, introducing both the staff and the guest to one another. That new staff member then walked the guest to the event destination while chatting with the guest the entire time. Granted, we are talking about a walk from one side of the store to the other. But the entire time I felt like I was the VIP guest at the Ritz Carlton. Seriously, these staff members were that warm and friendly.

As for the event, I feel torn here. On one side, this event is an opportunity to applaud the 2013 Shining Star honorees and sponsors. So for that I say it is just a privilege to be in the same room with those who make such a difference in others’ lives. On the other hand, the fact that the beautiful invitation stated “champagne & dessert” caused me to expect something more than what was delivered. I have attended this event in the past and it was always an elegant evening. But this time it seemed like it fell short of the expectation.

On the bright side, the juried Art Awards were announced at the reception, on display and available for purchase at the Shining Stars event last Friday. Best of Show was presented to artist Jackie Railsback for “Golden Sunrise in Creede.” First place went to artist Nancy Medina for “Love’s Embrace White Hydrangeas,” second place went to artist Cherie Giddens for “Standing in the Rain” and the People’s Choice award was presented to artist Connie Nichols for “Aspen Splendor.”

Congratulations to the winners and honorees!

Social columnist Larre Green welcomes your information and input on interesting stories and events. Contact him at

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