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Gordon: This year’s ‘Chocolate Ball’ event may not be real, but the need to help is | COMMENTARY

As we head into February one thinks of Valentine’s Day, cards, red roses, and, of course, Carroll County Youth Service Bureau’s Chocolate Ball. This year, instead of hosting their annual fabulous formal fundraising event, CCYSB will continue to care for the health and safety of the community they serve, through a non-event event.

The 13th annual Chocolate Ball is being promoted as a non-event event that will not be happening on Saturday, February 6, 2021. In lieu of an in-person event, they will be offering something unique according to Andie Luchini, Director of Donor Relations, Events, and Marketing of CCYSB.

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“I am happy to announce that our annual Chocolate Ball continues to be the hottest ‘non-event’ in town! Due to this year’s pandemic, our wonderful ‘guests’ get to stay at home safely in their pajamas (I’d like pictures please!) with a book or Netflix, and maybe some wine ... knowing that 100% of their donation will support our mission. Behavioral health is especially important during this time with so many Carroll County residents feeling isolated and lonely and with increased stress and anxiety. CCYSB continues to serve those in need,” said Luchini.

This Chocolate Ball will not only be the fanciest event you have never attended but will be a sellout event that no one else will be attending either. All donations raised through their ‘non-event’ will directly support the extremely important mission of CCYSB which is even more significant during these unprecedented times.

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On a serious note, the past year has been one in which CCYSB’s clients have experienced unprecedented stress, isolation, and financial strain due to the COVID pandemic. Support of CCYSB’s mission allows therapists and care providers to assist those in need in adapting to the changes around them while also receiving the care necessary for treatment and recovery.

According to the “non-event” plans, organizations and individuals will still have the ability to purchase tickets and sponsorships to their black-tie optional “Mask-querade Ball” non-event that is not taking place on Saturday, Feb. 6. Music, hors d’oeuvres and cocktails will not start at 6:30 pm, and no one will be giving speeches at 7:30 pm.

Instead of attending this event that no one else will be attending, CCYSB is respectfully requesting members of the community to consider making a donation to support CCYSB’s mission. All attendees are asked to stay at home safely and relax, knowing you have made a significant difference in the lives of those in need in the community.

Non-event sponsorships are available and will still come in various flavors and sizes, and each will come with a “Chocolate Ball Experience Box,” full of decadent treats and gift cards. These will allow the purchaser to hold their own mini-Chocolate Ball when the time is right. Non-event ticket purchases of $250 or more will come with a chance to win a very special prize through the exclusive Golden Ticket Chocolate Ball Raffle.

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“Although the scrumptious food, live entertainment, fun auctions and our signature chocolate martinis will be sorely missed this year, guests don’t need to shop for a dress or suit, hire a babysitter, or worry about me asking them for even more money once they arrive,” Luchini chuckled. Instead, they can support CCYSB by making a donation from the comfort of their own home, knowing they have helped their neighbors in need,” she said.

For more information on sponsorship levels and tickets to support Carroll County Youth Service Bureau’s no-event event please visit: www.ccysb.org/upcoming-events.

While the event this year is not real, the need in our community is certainly without question real.

Tom Gordon writes from Westminster. His column appears every other Saturday. Email him at tgordonwrites@gmail.com.

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