26th Annual Gala in the Garden

Benefiting Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

Swanee and Paul DiMare

More than 400 guests attended the Annual Gala in the Garden at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden. The event was co-chaired by Swanee DiMare and Frances Sevilla-Sacasa with Joyce Burns serving as Philanthropic Chair. Proceeds supported Fairchild’s programs in conservation science, education, and horticulture.

The evening commenced with a cocktail reception and beautiful silent auction in the Adam R. Rose and Peter R. McQuillan Arts Center. Featured items included luxury vacations, fine jewelry, and designer accessories.

Guests then moved to the Lakeside Marquee, and were awestruck by the stunning decor. The venue was bathed in celestial globes of gold, silver and sparkling white, while vines of orchids dangled from the ceiling. The Garden Galaxy theme was in celebration of Fairchild’s 80th Anniversary, recognizing their partnership with NASA. The décor featured a sustainable and creative way to look to the future of the Garden.

Board of Trustees President Bruce Greer welcomed guests and thanked this year’s Royal Palm Sponsors: Paul and Swanee DiMare, Tony and Joyce Burns, Lou and Mary Jean Risi, Bunny and Raphael Bastian, Kenneth O’Keefe and Jason Stephens, and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Mary Jean and Lou Risi were also given a special honor for their longstanding support of the Garden.

Le Basque served a gourmet meal consisting of seafood salpicon, filet mignon, and a chocolate galaxy “black hole”. After dinner, everyone packed the dance floor enjoying the pop tunes of the Danny Beck Band. Upon departure, guests received beautiful orchid plants to take home.

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