Causes for celebration: a preview of the social season

For The Baltimore Sun
What are the biggest social events of the fall season?

As September begins, so does the fall party season, when many local groups put on their biggest fundraising events of the year in support of various causes and charities.

This year, however, there's something more in the air than just cooler weather. Last week's court hearings were just another reminder that this is a year when many of those who "have" have been motivated to help those who have not.

After April's disturbances, many local nonprofits saw an increase in patronage. Groups like Living Classrooms Foundation, which offers a number of programs for the city's underserved youth, saw more community engagement and outreach.

"Since the unrest, there has been increased interest in supporting Living Classrooms and our efforts to disrupt the cycle of poverty and increase the number of people volunteering, almost 7,000 this year. Last year, it was around 5,000," says James Piper Bond, president and CEO of Living Classrooms.

Even those nonprofits not connected to those issues saw an increase of support.

"There's definitely increased interest in making Baltimore better. That's manifesting itself in a lot of ways. Philanthropy is one way," says Brock Yetso, president and CEO of Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.

For some groups, the heightened interest has translated into brisk ticket sales for fall events.

Casey Baynes, founder of Casey Cares Foundation, which provides support to critically ill children and their families, says her group's Rock 'n Roll Bash set for the end of September is selling quickly.

"Ticket sales last year were great, but we weren't sold out until about four or five days before. [Already this year] we're on the fringe of being sold out," she says.

Yetso says his organization has analyzed why people open their wallets for specific parties.

"People come to your event for three reasons: They already have a strong connection to the cause; they have a personal relationship with someone involved who invited them — people get the people; and they want to go to a great party," he says.

Whatever your cause for celebration, these shindigs offer a range of options for fall partygoers.

Youth and families

Maritime Magic

Benefits: Living Classrooms Foundation

Details: Friday, Sept. 25, 7 p.m., Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park, 1417 Thames St. Features food stations from more than 80 local restaurants and caterers, liquor samples, cash bar, live music and dancing.

Attire: Casual festive

Tickets: $110 in advance, $120 at door; livingclassrooms.org

Royal Blue Recognition Dinner

Benefits: B&O Railroad Museum's Early Childhood Education Programs

Details: 5:30 p.m. Sept. 28, Caves Valley Golf Club, 2910 Blendon Road, Owings Mills. Hors d'oeuvres, railroad-themed food stations with paired wines, open bar, desserts

Attire: Country club casual attire

Tickets: $500;

Farm to Chef

Benefits: Days of Taste, food-discovery educational program for children

Details: 6:30 pm Oct. 5, B&O Railroad Museum, 901 W. Pratt St. Food stations in culinary completion of 30 local chefs paired with local farms, open bar

Attire: Business casual

Tickets: $110;

Faces 2015

Benefits: The Children's Home

Details: 6 p.m. Oct. 29, Baltimore Museum of Industry, 1415 Key Highway. Hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, specialty cocktails, food stations, desserts, live music, interactive art tables, photo booth, strolling magic, live and silent auctions of original artwork created by the at-risk children and youth living at The Children's Home

Attire: Business

Tickets: $85, VIP - $125; thechildrenshome.net

An Evening Ringside

Benefits: Jonathan Ogden Foundation

Details: 6 p.m. Nov. 12, Martins Valley Mansion, 594 Cranbrook Road, Cockeysville. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, live professional boxing matches.

Attire: Business casual

Tickets: $250;

Self-sufficiency

An Evening of Unexpected Delights

Benefits: The Journey Home, advocating for the homeless

Details: 6:30 p.m. Oct. 24, Baltimore Convention Center, 1 W. Pratt St. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, performance by surprise internationally renowned artist, DJ, dancing

Attire: Cocktail

Tickets: $300; journeyhomebaltimore.org

Children's, family health

Scunny-Elvis Golf Classic

Benefits: Believe in Tomorrow Children's Foundation

Details: 12 p.m. Sept. 14, golf tournament; 5 p.m. awards dinner, Woodlands Golf Course, 2309 Ridge Road, Windsor Mill. Golf tournament with orange crushes and margaritas offered on the course, followed by awards dinner with open bar, costume contest

Attire: Golf attire, Elvis costumes. Anyone dressed as a female co-star in an Elvis movie hits from the ladies' tees.

Tickets: $175; believeintomorrow.org

Rock 'n Roll Bash

Benefits: Casey Cares Foundation, supporting critically ill children

Details: 6:30 p.m. Sept. 26, Ram's Head Center Stage at Maryland Live! Casino, 7002 Arundel Mills Circle. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, performances by AC/DC tribute band High Voltage and 1980s band Night Ranger, dancing

Attire: Rock 'n roll

Tickets: $100; caseycares.org

Screw Cancer Brew Hope

Benefits: Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults

Details: 6 p.m. Oct. 1, Farmstead Grill, 3721 Boston St. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, wine, beer

Attire: Business casual. Ravens gear is encouraged.

Tickets: $55; ulmanfund.org

HamburGala

Benefits: Ronald McDonald House Charities of Baltimore

Details: 6:30 p.m., Nov. 6, Four Seasons Hotel, 200 International Drive. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner (McDonald's ingredients will be used in dishes prepared and served throughout the evening)

Attire: Cocktail

Tickets: $200; 410-528-1010, Ext. 105

Maryland Hope Gala

Benefits: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation

Details: 5:30 p.m. Nov. 14, Hilton Baltimore, 401 W. Pratt St. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, DJ, dancing

Attire: Black tie

Tickets: $300; jdrf-greaterchespoto.ejoinme.org/mdhopegala

Health and diseases

Rockin' the Red for Sickle Cell

Benefits: The William E. Proudford Sickle Cell Fund

Details: 6 p.m. Sept. 9, CareFirst Tower, 1501 S. Clinton St., Baltimore. Food stations, non-alcoholic beverages, panoramic view of the city

Attire: Business cocktail with the color red encouraged

Tickets: $85, VIP - $150; wepsicklecell.org

Howard County Winemasters

Benefits: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Details: 7 p.m. Sept. 12, Manor Hill Brewing, 4411 Manor Lane, Ellicott City. Food stations, wine and beer tastings, live music

Attire: Black tie

Tickets: $300; howardcountywinemasters.eventscff.org

Women on the Move

Benefits: National MS Society, Maryland Chapter

Details: 6 p.m. Sept. 17, American Visionary Art Museum, 800 Key Highway. Small plates, wine, desserts, shopping at "boutiques" of women-made attire, accessories and gifts

Attire: Business casual

Tickets: $75; mswomenmd.org

Flip Flop Festivus

Benefits: Life and Breath Foundation

Details: 7 p.m. Sept. 18, Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore, 200 International Drive. Hors d'oeuvres, food stations, open bar, desserts, mingle with professional athletes, live music, dancing

Attire: Resort casual

Tickets: $100, VIP - $150; lifeandbreath.org

Rally on the Rail

Benefits: GBMC Hospital Pediatric Oncology

Details: 11 a.m. Sept. 26, The Legacy Chase Steeplechase Races at Shawan Downs. Food stations, cash bar with signature drinks, front row seat at the races, corn hole contest, games and prizes between races

Attire: Smart casual; prizes awarded to best hat and best outfit

Tickets: $20 for Old Line Society Members, $30 for non-members; oldlinesociety.org

Charm Ball 2015

Benefits: Chase Brexton Health Care

Details: 6 p.m. Sept. 26, Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park, 1417 Thames St. Hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, cash bar, seated dinner, appearances by celebrities, including actors CCH Pounder, Kevin McHale, Thea Gill, Connie Stevens and Kevin Sasaki

Attire: Cocktail

Tickets: $250; chasebrextonevents.org

Evening on the Severn

Benefits: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Details: 7 p.m. Oct. 1, at a private home on the Severn River in Severna Park. Hors d'oeuvres, food stations, wine, specialty drinks

Attire: Business

Tickets: $375; maryland.cff.org,

Tea in the Valley

Benefits: AIDS Action Baltimore

Details: 2 p.m. Oct. 4, Brookside, 1760 Greenspring Valley Road, Lutherville. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, open bar, DJ, dancing, garden party theme

Attire: Festive casual

Tickets: $150; aidsactionbaltimore.org

Soiree with O.J.

Benefits: The Brigance Brigade Foundation

Details: Tuesday, Oct. 6, Hard Rock Café, 601 E. Pratt St. Passed hors d'oeuvres, food stations, wine, beer, music, dancing, celebrity appearances, celebration of O.J. Brigance's birthday

Attire: Business/cocktail

Tickets: $100; brigancebrigade.org

One Cause One Concert

Benefits: Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center

Details: 6:30 p.m. Oct. 10 reception; 8 p.m. concert. Modell Center for the Performing Arts at the Lyric, 110 W. Mount Royal Ave. Small plates, open bar, concert by Paul Rodgers Band

Attire: Rock 'n roll casual

Tickets: $150; concert only, $40; lyricoperahouse.com

Spotlight Gala

Benefits: Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America

Details: 7 p.m. Nov. 6, Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, 700 Aliceanna St. Chef's tastings from more than 30 local restaurants, open bar, lip print readings, photo booth

Attire: Cocktail

Tickets: $150; ccfaspotlight.com

Maryland's Finest

Benefits: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Maryland Chapter

Details: 7 p.m. Nov. 12, Maryland Science Center, 601 Light St. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, food stations from local restaurants, beer, wine, signature cocktails, DJ

Attire: Business/cocktail

Tickets: $75; finest.cff.org/activity/cff/Maryland

Special needs

Goodwill Gridiron Halloween Party

Benefits: Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake

Details: 7 p.m. Oct. 12, Dave & Buster's at Arundel Mills, 7000 Arundel Mills Circle, Severn. Buffet, open bar, costume contest, DJ, dancing, mingle with Baltimore Ravens players

Attire: Casual attire/Halloween costumes

Tickets: $150; goodwillgridiron.com

Wishes, Dreams & Imagination

Benefits: Dyslexia Tutoring Program

Details: 6 p.m. Oct. 15, Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel, 700 Aliceanna St. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, program students placed at every table

Attire: Business casual

Tickets: $300; dyslexiatutoringprogram.org

Art in the Round

Benefits: The Arc Baltimore

Details: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 16, The Grand Lodge, 302 International Circle, Hunt Valley. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, signature cocktail, exhibit and silent auction of art created by people with developmental disabilities

Attire: Business

Tickets: $75; thearcbaltimore.org

Chimes Gala honoring Calvin G. Butler

Benefits: Chimes

Details: 5:30 p.m. Oct. 24, Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel, 700 Aliceanna St. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, performances by The Four Tops and The Commodores, dessert

Attire: Business

Tickets: $275; chimes.org

Environment/conservation

Evening at Marshy Point

Benefits: Gunpowder Valley Conservancy

Details: 5 p.m. Sept. 12, Marshy Point Nature Center, 7130 Marshy Point Road, Baltimore. Food stations, wine and Heavy Seas beer, live reggae music

Attire: Casual

Tickets: $85; gunpowdervalleyconservancy.org

Industry Night on the Terrace

Benefits: U.S. Green Building Council Maryland Chapter

Details: 5:30 p.m. Sept. 17, Natty Boh Tower, 3600 O'Donnell St., 8th floor terrace. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, bourbon tasting, cigar bar

Attire: Business casual attire

Tickets: $45 in advance, $60 at the door (cash or check only); usgbcmaryland.org

Ecoball

Benefits: Baltimore Green Works

Details: 7 p.m. Oct. 16, Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park, 1417 Thames St. Food stations manned by Stratford University chefs, food donated by local farms, open bar, live music, dancing

Attire: Recycled or eco-inspired cocktail attire

Tickets: $75, $40 for students; baltimoregreenworks.com

Pumpkins on the Green

Benefits: Irvine Nature Center

Details: 7 p.m. Oct. 23, Irvine Nature Center, 11201 Garrison Forest Road, Owings Mills. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, buffet dinner, dessert, live music, dancing, live animals

Attire: Blue jean casual attire

Tickets: $140; explorenature.org

The arts

Gala Celebration with Lang Lang

Benefits: Baltimore Symphony Orchestra

Details: Saturday, Sept. 12 6:30 p.m. dinner reception, 8:30 concert, Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St. Passed hors d'oeuvres, food stations, open bar, BSO concert featuring celebrated pianist Lang Lang, post concert dessert reception

Attire: Black tie-optional attire

Tickets: $500-$5,000; concert only, $75-$100; bsomusic.org

Autumn Blaze Fire Festival

Benefits: Baltimore Clayworks

Details: 5 p.m. Oct. 17, Baltimore Clayworks, 5706 Smith Ave. Hamburgers, hot dogs and sides. One drink coupon included in ticket price. Cash/coupon bar, live music, fire dancers, games, hands-on mug making

Attire: Casual

Tickets: $15 members, $20 non-members, $25 at door; baltimoreclayworks.org

The Walters Gala – An Evening on the S.S. Narada

Benefits: Walters Art Museum

Details: 6 p.m. Oct. 17, Walters Art Museum, 600 N. Charles St. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner in the galleries, DJ, dancing

Attire: Black tie or yachting attire

Tickets: $500; after party, $90 or $110 after Oct. 1; thewalters.org/gala

Lotta Art

Benefits: School 33 Art Center

Details: 6 p.m. Nov. 7, School 33 Art Center, 1427 Light St. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, signature cocktails, art lottery

Attire: Midcentury modern cocktail or casual

Tickets: $150 includes a work of art ($50 lottery not included); school33.org

Evening with George Benson

Benefits: Art with a Heart

Details: 5:30 p.m. Nov. 12; 8 p.m. concert, Modell Center for the Performing Arts at the Lyric, 110 W. Mount Royal Avenue. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, beer, wine, premium orchestra seating for concert by Grammy winner George Benson and his band

Attire: Smart casual

Tickets: $125; concert only, $38-$85; artwithaheart.net

Reginald F. Lewis Museum Gala

Benefits: Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African-American History & Culture

Details: 8:30 p.m. Nov. 14, Reginald F. Lewis Museum, 830. E. Pratt St. Heavy hors d'oeuvres, open bar, jazz lounge featuring jazz legend Ellis Marsalis, DJ, dancing, live entertainment throughout galleries, dessert stations

Attire: Black tie-optional or early 20th-century attire

Tickets: For museum members, $65; after Sept. 16, $70. Non-members, $80; lewismuseum.org

20 Simply Divine Years Anniversary Gala

Benefits: American Visionary Arts Museum

Details: 5 p.m. Nov. 21, American Visionary Art Museum, 800 Key Highway. Open bar, hors d'oeuvres, seated dinner, after party with beer, wine and light fare, surprise celebrity guests, live music, dancing

Attire: "Visionary formal" — meaning anything and everything goes — with "your Baltimore best hair"

Tickets: $500; $400 for AVAM members. Hair Ball After Party, $40; $30 for AVAM members, $50 at the door; avam.org

Dancing for the Arts Gala

Benefits: Harford County's Center for the Arts

Details: 6:30 p.m. Nov. 21, Maryland Golf and Country Club, 1335 E. Macphail Road, Bel Air. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, ballroom dancing competition

Attire: Black tie-optional

Tickets: $185; dancingforthearts.com

Domestic abuse/sexual assault

Balloon Glow Gala

Benefits: SARC (Sexual Assault/Spouse Abuse Resource Center)

Details: 7 p.m., Sept. 18, Maryland Golf And Country Club, 1335 E. Macphail Road, Bel Air. Hors d'oeuvres, open bar, seated dinner, lighted hot air balloons outside, live music, dancing

Attire: Black tie-optional; "Wizard of Oz"-themed attire

Tickets: $135; sarc-maryland.org

Volunteerism

A Night of Doing Good. Better.

Benefits: Business Volunteers Maryland

Details: 5 p.m. Sept. 26, SC&H Group Campus, 910 Ridgebrook Road, Sparks. Barbecue foods, beer, wine, performance by Dennis Jones Band

Attire: Casual

Tickets: $50; businessvolunteersmd.org

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