Big Brother Big Sister Ice Ball | Annual Gala at the Fairmont
Every year, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas holds an extravagant evening called the Ice Ball Gala and the Big After. This evening is the largest fundraiser for the nonprofit. The event was held at the Fairmont Hotel in Austin, TX.
The event started with checking in and a cocktail hour. Gentleman wore classic suits and women wore an array of dresses. It was wonderful seeing all the different types of dresses that women wear for a gala! It felt like a mini fashion week party; that is, if I’ve been to a fashion week party! One of my favorite dresses from the evening was a pale blue strapless gown that looked like something Cinderella would wear. During the cocktail hour, the biggest sponsor of the evening Kendra Scott had two interactive moments for guests to take part of. At both tables, guests could receive a surprise Kendra Scott gift, but each had different prizes and different ways to win. One was called the treasure chest where a guest can reach into a confetti filled box and to find a colored gem that has a coordinating Kendra Scott Prize. The other were a series of lockers that each held a surprise. Guests would randomly pick a key to unlock one of the lockers to find a prize.
After the cocktail hour, guests were ushered into the ballroom for dinner and the rest of the festivities. The first game the guests played was called Heads or Tales. Basically, everyone puts their hand on top of their head or on their butt while a coin is flipped. If the coin is heads, those who have their hand on their head stay standing; if the coin is tales, those who have their hand on their butt stay standing. The guests were participating in this game of chance to win a diamond. Yes, an actual diamond. The final three guests left in the game came on stage for the final few coin tosses.
Following the game was the live auction. There were tons of things up for auction most of which were extravagant trips to European countries. Men in cowboy hats oversaw the auction. It was so exciting to see how a live auction actually works! However, I’m sure this was a tad different from a traditional auction. I was running around the ballroom following the auctioneers in cowboy hats trying to predict who will continue betting. Big Brothers Big Sisters was able to raise thousands of dollars within that one night!
After the official Gala ended, the Big After began! Basically, there was an after party for the party. PDA was the cover band on stage and they performed a range of songs from classic Michael Jackson to Beyonce. Those who did not attend the Ice Ball had the chance to purchase tickets to just the Big After; this part of the event is Big Brothers Big Sisters way of reaching a younger audience and those who may not already be involved with the organization or can afford a gala ticket.
This was a wonderful evening celebrating a wonderful organization!