The Esplanade Association’s glittering annual “Moondance Gala” on Saturday evening, Sept. 15, sparkled with stupendous support and sincere celebration. With profound partnership and generosity from over 600 donors and guests, $1.18 million was raised for the organization’s continued efforts to create a thriving, safe, accessible park, where people come together to share, explore, and enjoy nature and community.
The festive crowd enjoyed a magical evening along the Charles River. The iconic Fielder Field was seemingly transformed into a Moroccan mirage through the creative collaboration of gala partners Frost Productions, Table & Tulip, Peak Event Services, Be Our Guest and Wayfair.
Guests enjoyed cocktails from within the Marrakesh lounge listening to the dynamic sounds of traditional Middle Eastern drummers, followed by an elegant dinner of Persian cuisine by Max Ultimate Food, all set beneath a breathtaking canopy of exotic foliage and glowing luminaries. While dining, guests were treated to a surprise high-energy performance by Celebrity Series of Boston musicians, the five-piece Cocek! Brass Band, followed by the unveiling of the Tiffany & Co. Mystery Blue Box Winner. The party then continued late into the night with dancing under the moonlit sky and stars by music spun by DJ Chris Roxx.
As the Esplanade Association receives no public funding, the “Moondance Gala” is a critical fundraising initiative—the largest of the year. Co-chaired by Boston residents Alexi and Steve Conine and Jill and Niraj, this year’s gala raised a record amount, well over $1 million dollars, all to support the organization’s ongoing efforts to maintain and improve the Charles River Esplanade.
In the coming year, the funds will support a Pathway Safety Plan, the installation of welcome gardens at footbridges, and the implementation of the Tree Care Management & Succession Plan. In addition, the funds will allow the organization to expand their Art in the Park program as well as educational community programming that bring children with limited access to green space to the Esplanade, and much more.
“This year’s Moondance Gala was a spectacular celebration of our vibrant and beautiful historic riverside park and its incredible supporters. It was with their help that the gala exceeded all expectations and raised over $1.18 million – more than ever before” said, Michael Nichols, the Esplanade Association’s Executive Director. “It is not easy keeping the Esplanade green and healthy, yet with the support and engagement of our dedicated community the Esplanade Association will continue to work to make life better in the park for the enjoyment of all today and for future generations to come.”