Austin’s SAFE Alliance Hosts Hundreds At Annual Storybook Gala
By Rob Giardinelli Photography by Mari Nelson and Ben Porter
THE SETTING: A picture-perfect Saturday evening in Austin was the recent setting of one of the Capital City’s most anticipated fall events. Over 500 sociables, philanthropists, and other VIPs descended upon the JW Marriott hotel for the SAFE Storybook Gala. The event, A Coat of Many Colors, unfolded like a classic fairy tale. The evening featured great friends, touching tributes, and most importantly of all–fundraising.
THE STYLE: The first chapter of this magical evening began in the foyer of the JW Marriott Austin for a lively cocktail hour. Here, the guests, many of whom donned colorful ensembles, sipped delicious drinks while getting reacquainted with old friends and making new ones. Additionally, guests could peruse silent auction items, preview live auction items, and purchase raffle tickets to win luxury items that were being awarded to supporters.
Turning the page, partygoers entered the JW Marriott ballroom for the main program. As guests dined on their delectable multi-course meals, they were treated to words from the SAFE leadership, as well as several emotional testimonials showcasing the positive impact the organization has on the community. Other highlights of the main program included a spirited live auction and honoring philanthropist Gary Walker with the Guardian Award for his tireless support of the organization. The evening concluded with an after party where guests danced the night away.
THE PURPOSE: The event raised nearly $800,000 for the SAFE Alliance. SAFE provides a stable and healing space to those who have lived through violence and abuse. Funds raised from this event will help provide assistance for essential services, including housing, prevention programs, and support services.