Playing it forward: Elaine Goodman, Event Chair Linda Hornsby, featured speaker Frank Stewart and David Weener.
By Mark Hopkinson
The BallenIsles Bridge Club in Palm Beach Gardens FL partnered with the BallenIsles Charities Foundation to host the 2nd Annual Bridge FUNdraiser in early February. The event, which garnered more than $23,000 for local charities, brought together more than 45 world-class bridge luminaries, club members and guests.
Nationally syndicated bridge columnist and ACBL Bridge Bulletin contributor Frank Stewart captivated the audience as featured speaker. His topic: the joys and intricacies of bridge.
Over lunch, the bridge experts fielded questions on tips and tactics. Lunch was followed by an individual duplicate game directed by J.R. Sanford. A wine and cheese reception at which awards were presented concluded the gala affair.
In addition to Stewart, the expert bridge community was represented by Larry Cohen, Marty Bergen, David and Lisa Berkowitz, Jo Morse, Jenny Wolpert, Claire and George Tornay, Keith Hanson, John Solodar, Paul Swanson, Lydia Popish, Kathy Wei-Sender, Jeanni Blume and Jim Sternberg.
“The game we love never shines brighter than when players of all levels join together to support a worthy cause,” said Bergen. “The organizers at BallenIsles should be commended for doing a great job.”
Cohen agreed. “It’s a win-win for bridge and a great cause when such an event takes place.”
Jeanni Blume, Manager of the Pompano Beach Bridge Club, called it an unbelievable day. “The event made every single person feel special. We can’t wait for next year!”
Frank Stewart greatly admires the “extraordinary work” the BallenIsles Charities Foundation is doing. “When I was invited to help out, I was honored.”
The BallenIsles Charities Foundation as established in 2011 to “Make a Difference.” The Foundation is committed to supporting civic and not-for-profit organizations in the community by providing financial and in-kind support in a few key program areas: civic, health and human services, environment and education. In its first two years, the BallenIsles Charities Foundation, Inc. awarded nearly $290,000 to 23 local area organizations.
Thelma Michaelson of the BallenIsles Bridge Club and event committee member William Morris look on as Frank Stewart autographs books at the BallenIsles Charities Foundation FUNdraiser.
Marianne Guerra gets a little one-on-one time with Marty Bergen, one of many bridge celebrities who helped make the charity fundraiser a huge success.