BCE in Full Gear for Annual Dinner Dance

Today is the last day to buy tickets for this weekend's BCE annual dinner dance.

The Burlingame Community Education Foundation (BCE) is abuzz with plans for the annual dinner dance to be held Saturday, April 14, at the from 5:30 p.m. until midnight. Tickets are available online and will be on sale until Monday, April 9.

With an expected attendance of 500, BCE hopes to raise $250,000, which is 25 percent of its 2011-2012 fundraising goal, according to Nicole Johnson, BCE executive director.

“Ticket sales are a bit slow right now but we think that’s because Burlingame families are on spring break this week,” said Johnson last week. “We anticipate ticket sales will pick up next week.”

She also noted that attendance has been trending downward the past few years, most likely because of the sluggish economy.

This year’s event has a “Mad Men” theme, and guests are encouraged to wear cocktail attire of the “Mad Men” era. All Star Juke Box, featuring eight dynamic musicians, will set the stage for an evening of dancing and lively entertainment.

The annual event raises funds to support the six elementary schools in the . Funds raised support quality instruction, small class size, and enriched curriculum―all endangered because of severe state budget cuts to education over the past few years.

In addition to dinner and dancing, there’s a live auction, silent auction, online auction and raffle. Guests can also try their luck in the Monte Carlo gaming lounge.

Highlighted items for the live auction include an overnight stay at the Moonraker Hotel in Pacifica and chef’s dinner for five couples, a luxury suite at a Giants vs. Cubs game, a week’s stay in Cabo San Lucas and a fashion fete for five couples at Malouf’s including a $500 gift certificate for each couple. Everyone will have a chance to participate, even if they are outbid on these big items, by raising their auction paddle to “fund a need.” This year’s “fund a need” campaign will support a district-wide science specialist.

The silent auction will include more than 50 items including parties, wines and wine pairings. Parents can also bid to have their child be “Mayor of Burlingame for a Day,” with Mayor Jerry Deal. The six school PTAs are offering reserved front row seats to school graduations and spring concerts.

Those who cannot attend but still want to participate can check out the online auction here. Bids will be accepted until April 11 at 9 p.m. The online auction features kids’ and adult parties, camps, hotel stays, gift certificates and more. There’s also a raffle, and tickets are $20 each or six for $100, and participants need not be present at the dinner dance to win. The grand prize is a three-night Sonoma getaway in a private home, including a hot air balloon ride for two and brunch. Second prize is a one-night stay at the Rosewood Sand Hill Hotel in Menlo Park, including spa treatments and breakfast, and the third prize is a family membership at the California Academy of Sciences and a $200 gift certificate good for use at the restaurant or gift shop. You can purchase raffle tickets here.

BCE Dinner Dance Chair Lisa Kershner and Auction Chair Nicole Johnson are working with a committee of more than 100 volunteers on this year’s event. In addition to many auction donors, they’ve lined up lead community sponsors including , , Sutter Health, Putnam Automotive, , and Bodies.

Tickets for the event and raffle tickets can be purchased online at https://bcefoundation.ejoinme.org/?tabid=352591.


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