Over 500 Islanders and Island supporters joined together in a fabulous community celebration at the 11th Annual Giving from the Heart Breakfast on Wednesday. Over 500 attended the event that will net over $100,000 for Mercer Island Youth and Family Services. Fitting in with the theme of the breakfast–”Taking Care of Our Own”–the event included Aubrey Davis and Virginia Moss Anderson as Honorary Co-Chairs, a three-generation family in the speaking slot, and a video highlighting the importance of supporting fellow Islanders. Attendees enjoyed a beautiful, kosher breakfast catered by Island Crust Cafe who donated $5,000 towards the cost of the food.
MIYFS Foundation President, James Murphy, kept the program flowing as Master of Ceremonies, and Cindy Goodwin kicked off the program by showing off the new Department logo and walking attendees through the department highlights and statistics.
Three philanthropy awards were presented at the Breakfast. The first award went to Dr. David Weed, an Island dentist for his consistent support of MIYFS and for organizing Island dentists this year to provide pro bono dental care on a rotational basis to low-income clients with no dental insurance. The second award went to Michele Tesler, owner of Tatters who has supported MIYFS for years by donating a percentage of her December business to MIYFS and her early support for the Giving from the Heart Shopping and Dining Program.
The third award brought the crowd of 500 to their feet. Myra Lupton was surprised with an Outstanding Ambassador Award for her incredible contribution to MIYFS, having been a generous contributor, longtime MIYFS Board Member and a breakfast committee member for all eleven of the Giving from the Heart Breakfast events. James Murphy stated, “Myra has tireless energy to spread the word about the good things MIYFS is doing for our community—on the many boards and committees she serves in, with her neighbors, with people new to the Island, and among her many friends and acquaintances. She fully understands and embraces the value that MIYFS provides to our community and she’s one of our very best community ambassador.”
A highlight of the event was a talk by a 3-generation Island family–the Hanson/Eggebrecht family–who effectively connected-the-dots between MIYFS and all Island families. Debbie and Dan Hanson, their three kids Connor, Nick and Mathew, Debbie’s mother and father–Jeannette and Arnie Eggebrecht, and Debbie’s brother Jason Eggebrecht, each took the microphone and talked eloquently about how MIYFS services benefit our community and them personally.
A new MIYFS Film was debuted, “We are the Safety Net” hosted by Council Member Tana Senn and featuring Island residents Jack Alhadeff, Sara Page, Lisa Brown Spencer, Mary Fran and Harold Hill, in addition to State Representative Judy Clibborn and State Senator Steve Litzow. The film can be viewed here.
Deputy Mayor Dan Grausz, joined by MIYFS Foundation Board Member Lisa Brown Spencer pulled the tickets for the five fabulous raffle prizes which were valued at over $700 each. The raffle grossed over $2,000 at the event. Additionally, they announced the winners of the School Art Program where elementary children draw pictures of ways to “Give from the Heart.” Award winners Nicole Moe of St. Monica’s, Caitlin Buri of West Mercer, Avery Condor of Lakeridge and Carter Burr of Island Park all will get pizza parties for their entire class compliments of Island Crust Cafe. You can see the winners images here.
The program closed with a request to visit the twelve Island businesses that gave 20% of their revenue that day to Mercer Island Youth and Family services through the Giving from the Heart Shopping & Dining program. The crowd enjoyed a funny video showing Mayor Bruce Bassett and his wife Nannette shopping and eating at all twelve businesses in a single day to the tune “Flight of the Bumblebee.” The video can be viewed here.
Attendees included State Representative Marcie Maxwell, King County Sheriff John Urquart, Deputy Mayor Dan Grausz, City Council Member Mike Cero, MISD School Board Members Janet Frohnmayer, Pat Braman and Brian Emanuels, two Representatives from the Office of U.S. Representative Adam Smith. There were tables hosted by many community organizations including NCL Evergreen, NCL Lake Washington, St. Monica’s/SVDP, Rotary, Mercer Island Farmer’s Market, Mercer Island Women’s Club, Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce, MIVAL, each of the MISD elementary schools and IMS, the MI Schools Foundation, and four tables of Fran Call’s walking group the Solemates of whom Honorary Co-Chair Virginia Moss Anderson is a member.
Additional photos of the event can be found here.