Wonderment – a state of awed admiration or respect. Teen Living Program’s 2018 Gala was all about Wonderment and you felt that as soon as you walked into Morgan Manufacturing with projected bubbles at your feet and on the walls and brightly colored paper lanterns scattered throughout the venue. Over 400 guests entered the room with happy faces as they enjoyed the open bar and passed appetizers including, vegetable empanadas, sesame chicken on a lotus crisp and smoked salmon cones during cocktail hour.
Once the doors opened and guests were seated for the dinner portion of the evening, Jeri Lynch Linas, TLP CEO, welcomed the crowd and thanked all the generous sponsors. Mary Lou Mulvihill, Wonderment Gala Chairperson, then had the honor to present the 2018 Corporate Partner Award to Aon Corporation. After the main course of Grilled Hanger Steak paired with Lake Superior Whitefish was served, Stephanie Piccirilli, TLP Senior Vice President of Mission Engagement and Innovation, gave a terrific wonderment speech and then introduced Elijah Carter who is a CaSSA Resident with TLP. Elijah received a standing ovation after a very moving speech followed by a beautiful song which he sang acapella. The guests were touched and ready to show their support in the live paddle raise with the help of auctioneer, Bart Darfler, which raised over $230,000- a record breaking number for TLP! The live auction, which followed, also raised $33,500 between many amazing packages including a Cubs Dream Day, two first class round-trip tickets to Europe, a villa at the Miraval Resort & Spa and more! The silent auction showed to be very impressive as well with over 50 items which raised $36,000 for the charity.
The night didn’t stop there as David Ranalli amazed the crowd with his magic skills just as the main presentation concluded. Guests then were invited to continue the party and play some favorite childhood games such as Operation Surgery, Roller Bowler, Skee Ball, Rockin Ricochet, and Mine Shaft Madness. DJ Rock City kept the dancefloor alive and Spin-Spun was on hand to serve illuminated cotton candy. The fun continued late into the night but ended in a huge success with TLP raising over $500,000!
Teen Living Programs is a non-profit organization that has supported and strengthened Chicago’s most vulnerable young people for over 40 years. They focus solely on 14-24 year old’s who are experiencing homelessness; and offer comprehensive, year-round services to address everything from emergency needs and housing to education, job readiness, and embracing a healthy lifestyle. TLP’s services are available on Chicago’s south side, in neighborhoods of high poverty and violence and where critical supportive services are lacking. For more information, please visit www.tlpchicago.org.