Gala raises more than $117,000

Staff report

March 1, 2014

LUMBERTON — More than 470 guests enjoyed an evening of dancing and fun to raise money for a therapeutic garden as the Southeastern Health Foundation hosted its 22nd annual gala on Feb. 21 at the Southeastern Agricultural Center in Lumberton.

The event’s gold sponsors, benefactors, sponsors, patrons and guests raised more than $117,400, which will enable Southeastern Health to create a serenity/therapeutic garden for exercise and reflection for short-term rehabilitation patients of WoodHaven Nursing, Alzheimer’s and Rehabilitation Center as well as patients of Gibson Cancer Center. Family members of patients will also be able to spend time with their loved ones in the garden.

Chairing the gala committee were Dr. and Mrs. Peter Villani and Mr. and Mrs. John Barker who, along with Southeastern Health President and CEO Joann Anderson and her husband Terry, Foundation Chairman Coble D. Wilson Jr. and his wife Jill, and board of trustees Chairman Bo Stone and his wife Missy were on hand to greet guests for an evening of dancing to the music of Liquid Pleasure from Chapel Hill.

The foundation volunteers carried out the Garden Path for Healing theme with green plaid cloths, green hydrangeas, white stock, white lilies, Queen Anne’s lace and a variety of green foliage. Billy Davis and the staff of Flowers by Billy assisted with the floral design and decorations. A menu of beef tenderloin and Asian chicken sliders, among a variety of delicious hors d’oeuvres, was provided by A Thyme Savor Catering of Wilmington.

Wilson expressed appreciation on behalf of the foundation for the gala’s five gold sponsors, 38 benefactors, 18 sponsors, and 38 patrons. He also thanked the gala co-chairs and volunteer committee for their efforts and recognized past gala chairpersons who were also in attendance. Artwork painted by local artists Bunny Barker and Thomas Ard, who were assisted by gala committee members, were sold through a silent auction. A Rhythm of Love diamond necklace was donated by Bob’s Jewel Shop and awarded through a raffle. For information about the programs supported by the Southeastern Health Foundation, log on to