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Gala breaks attendance record

The+2017+Gala+was+held+at+Chicago%27s+Marriott+Hotel.
The 2017 Gala was held at Chicago's Marriott Hotel.

The 2017 Gala was held at Chicago's Marriott Hotel.

The 2017 Gala was held at Chicago's Marriott Hotel.

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For many years, Mount Carmel’s annual fundraiser was known as “The Big Event.” After being rebranded as “The Caravan Gala” in 2012, the event has grown both in attendance and fundraising success.  This year’s Gala, held at the Chicago Marriott Hotel on Saturday, February 18, set an attendance record with 430 guests.

The Big Event was launched in 1980 by Fr. Bob Carroll and Fr. David Dillon as a means of establishing an endowment fund to provide financial stability for MC.  The Big Event gained early attention when comedian Danny Thomas appeared to entertain the gathering.

In the years since, the annual event has raised over four million dollars.  Those funds have been invested by the Mount Carmel Educational Foundation, with a portion of each year’s investment income directed toward tuition assistance.  Over the years, through wise management, the endowment fund has grown to roughly nine million dollars.

David Lenti, Mount Carmel Director of Institutional Advancement, is appreciative of how the Gala benefits MC students and families. “The Gala helps keep tuition affordable for our families. This year we charge $11,200 for tuition, but it actually costs the school almost $14,000 to educate each student. The difference is made up through (contributions from) the endowment fund.”

This year’s Gala honored Tom Gibbs ’64 and his wife Sheila with the St. Albert Award, recognizing exemplary service to the Mount Carmel community. Gibbs serves on the Mount Carmel Educational Fund board, is president of the board of directors and has been active at Mount Carmel for many years.

Lenti notes that breaking the attendance record this year is a small step towards achieving even greater success.”Our goal is to have over 500 people in attendance (each year), and our (financial) goal for next year is to raise $350,000.”

The 2017 Gala was held at The Chicago Marriott Hotel

 

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The student news site of Mount Carmel High School
Gala breaks attendance record