Posted by Alvin Malnik on March 03, 2009


14th Annual Ball brings star power to South Florida and raises money for deserving children throughout the region

On Saturday, November 8, 2008, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida and InterContinental Miami will celebrate the 14th Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball with a mystical-themed dinner, musical performance by The Honey Brothers, extravagant live auction emceed by Kim Kardashian, and the debut of the Ball’s InterContinental Make-A-Wish Nightclub hosted by Miami nightlife impresarios Michael Capponi and Shareef Malnik. Watching over the bidding war will be Florida Governor Charlie Crist, who will also be appearing as a guest honoree at this year’s Ball.

This year’s Intercontinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball has once again been made possible by the committee’s star players and “The Three Amigos” – President/CEO of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida, Norm Wedderburn, InterContinental Miami General Manager and Gala Host Jack Miller, and Ball Chairman Shareef Malnik, proprietor of The Forge. Also honored at this year’s Ball will be Lifetime Benefactors Al and Nancy Malnik, Wish Benefactor James Ferraro, Grand Benefactors Stanley and Gala Cohen, Founding Benefactors Howard and Barbara Glicken, and Corporate Benefactor Robert Press of Trafalgar Capital Advisors.

“This year’s event is destined to be the most memorable yet,” said Norm Wedderburn, President and CEO of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida. “With a “who’s who” guest list of Miami VIPs, our most generous and loyal benefactors in attendance, and an extraordinary line-up of auction items, I am confident we will exceed the amount of money raised last year. Our ability to grant the wishes of hundreds of children in South Florida would not be possible without the time, dedication and heart-felt generosity of our host committee and local community.”

The evening will begin with a lavish cocktail reception featuring hors d’oeuvre stations created by the InterContinental’s Executive Chef Alexander Feher, spirits provided by Southern Wine & Spirits, and the renowned silent auction of 120 premier items donated by top hospitality, entertainment, fashion and luxury brands, including Saks Fifth Avenue, Bal Harbour, Tiffany & Co., Ocean Reef Club, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Carnival Cruise Lines and Christian Dior, to name a few. Numerous InterContinental Hotels worldwide will also be providing gift certificates for the auction. For the first time ever, the Ball will offer a “Buy it Now” option, enabling guests to forego the bidding process and purchase items on the spot for a disclosed price tag.

Following the cocktail reception, Executive Chef Alexander Feher will honor attendees with an indulgent five-course meal. Guests will feast on Cold Water Lobster a la Marche with Creole Mayo, Herb and Lettuce Bundle with Citrus Vinaigrette, a main course of Filet of Beef with Gorgonzola on Polenta Disk with Potato Gratin with Madeira Reduction, as well as Rum-Infused Pineapple with Vanilla Bean, Chocolate Cup with Espresso Mousse and Chocolate Bonbon for dessert. The dinner gala will include beats by Miami Heat’s own resident DJ Irie and an action-packed live auction hosted by Kim Kardashian, star of Keeping up with the Kardashians and former contestant on Dancing with the Stars, who has contributed one of her own Catherine Malandrino dresses to be auctioned at the benefit. A-list celebrities and Miami’s top VIPs and philanthropists will be bidding on a series of luxurious items, including an 2009 Aston Martin DBS and six high-end vehicle rentals donated by THE COLLECTION; an Aspen home rental provided by Edward Freedman; a gentleman’s watch provided by celebrity jeweler Jacob & Co.; a package of 10 Lasik procedures by “surgeon to the stars” Dr. Cory Lessner of Millennium Laser Eye Centers; a private party for 500 with full bar, courtesy of The Opium Group; a wine excursion provided by Southern Wine & Spirits with accommodations courtesy of InterContinental Hotels; and a walk-on role on the hit cable TV show Entourage, courtesy of cast member, actor Kevin Connelly.

In true InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball tradition, the grand finale of the event will feature live music entertainment for the after-dinner crowd to enjoy. The Honey Brothers, featuring actor Adrian Grenier on drums, will perform a number of tracks that will be sure to fill the dance floor. The five-member band will perform the Florida premier of “Won’t Last Long,” a single from the band’s forthcoming album that includes Adrian Grenier himself on vocals.

Bruce Sutka of Sutka Productions will transform the ballroom at The InterContinental Miami into a mystical enchanted forest evoking a magical world of fantasy and mythology. Tables will be adorned in exotic tapestries featuring vibrant flower centerpieces, complete with intertwining, lush green vines and floating candles, emulating the blossoming gardens of these fantasy-like worlds. The ballroom will be populated by a variety of mythical fauna and little people guiding guests throughout the night by the sounds of their trumpets, to further enthrall guests into the magical realm. The signature InterContinental Miami ice sculpture will adorn the mezzanine level with an enormous presence, displaying a feast of seafood and sushi.

Following the Ball and for the first time in Intercontinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball’s history, the invitation-only after-party at InterContinental Make-A-Wish Nightclub will be held to celebrate the Ball’s endeavors and reintroduce the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida to its next generation of contributors and Miami’s premier buzz creators in the fashion, arts, music and nightlife industries. Hosted by Kim Kardashian, The Honey Brothers, along with nightlife impresarios Michael Capponi and Shareef Malnik. The InterContinental Miami’s Chopin Ballroom will be turned into a hip after-hours venue with giant disco balls, progressive DJ beats and a mini fashion show by cutting-edge designer Richie Rich, who recently launched his Celebutante label.

The mission of the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Southern Florida is to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. In its 13-year history, the InterContinental Make-A-Wish Ball has raised in excess of $6 million. With these much needed funds, the Foundation has been able to grant more than 1,400 wishes for deserving children in our community. Past VIP guests of the Ball have included Sharon Stone, Scottie and Larsa Pippen, Russell and Kimora Lee Simmons, Venus and Serena Williams, Don King, Sex in the City’s Candace Bushnell, Marcus Schenkenberg, Pauly Shore, and performers Macy Gray, Natalie Cole and Wyclef Jean, as well as Bernadette Peters, the late Nel Carter, Andrea McCardle, Rikki Lake and Deborah Gibson.

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