Thursday evening (11/13) may have been a cold windy night outside in Chicago but inside of The Casino club, members and guests of Lincoln Park Zoo’s Women’s Board were getting their bidding arms warmed up for the night’s fundraising event, ZooLA.
Guests walked in to the sight of several individually decorated Veuve Cliquot bottles, circling a table, before making their way to view the auction items on display. Tables reserved for sponsors that included bankruptcy attorney Peter Francis Geraci of Geraci Law and his wife Holly, Denise and John Ginascol and Abby Zanarini and Don Funk.
Lined along the room were auction and raffle items including set of luxury handbags donated by individuals and Neiman Marcus with Neiman’s Tina Koegel and Wendy Krimins in attendance; Models decked in jewels by BoChic walking around and being remarked over especially the pink sapphire double O earrings.
After a lively cocktail reception, guests took their seats, pulled out their bid cards and got ready for the live auction led by John Fornengo which raised more than $270,000 to support the initiatives of Lincoln Park Zoo, that’s free all year round.
With items such as Bourbon Country getaway, Bulls & Blackhawks tickets, Scooter & BMW driving experience which went for $3,250, polar bear adventure which went for $11,000- a steal compared to the value at $12,790.
The high ticket items were: package to Botswana for two people for 11 nights and a ‘Diamonds are a Girls Best Friend’ package, featuring the aforementioned pink sapphire and diamond earrings plus tickets to NYFW, it went for $15,000 with the winning bidders wife planting a kiss on him, happy wife, happy life!
Though Mark Walter CEO of Guggenheim Partners, a big supporter of Lincoln Park Zoo, was not in attendance his wife Kimbra was along with Leslie Sulger, Shawn Ingall, John O’Reilly, Suzanne Meder, Charlie Huebner, former Women’s Board president Peggy White, Kim Theiss Women’s Board President and Lincoln Park Zoo President & CEO Kevin Bell, to name a few.
Proceeds from ZooLA, which was co-chaired by Susan Erler, Lisa Genesen and Karen Peterson, will support the Women’s Board pledge to support the zoo. Including projects such as Regenstein Macaque Forest, opening later this fall, and the new South African penguin habitat, set to open in 2016.
Image credit: Holly Myrick