The Contemporaries of the Azalee Marshall Cultural Activities Center will bring the glitz and glam of Las Vegas to Temple with their 51st annual fundraising gala.
“Vegas Redux” will take place 6:30-11 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, at the CAC, and will serve as the Contemporaries’ primary fundraising event for the year.
President Sharon Bell said the Vegas theme was brought back after the outstanding response to last year’s “Vintage Vegas” event. She said they received so many comments on how much fun the gala was, they decided to give the theme some updates this year.
“We now have a professional casino company who is doing the gambling,” Bell said.
Guests can play traditional casino games like craps, slot machines, roulette, poker and more.
Bell said there will also be local talent performing tributes to celebrities like Celine Dion, Garth Brooks, Billy Joel, Beyonce and Elton John.
“These are semi-professional people from the area, but we’re going to do two floor shows with these musicians and singers,” she said. “And we’ll have the Vegas buffet, and street performers like you’ll find on Fremont Street.”
The event will also include live and silent auctions. Bell said the live auction, conducted by Eddy Lange, will include several exciting items to bid on, including a four-night stay at a Las Vegas condominium during next year’s national rodeo finals, two tickets to see George Strait performing at T-Mobile Arena, a vintage necklace appraised at more than $7,000, dinner parties, hunting trips and more. The silent auction will feature antiques, artwork, jewelry, trips and other items.
Tickets for the gala can be reserved by calling the CAC at 254-773-9926.
Bell said over the past year the Contemporaries were able to give $93,000 to the CAC to help fund programs like Arts in Education, Hands On, summer art and drama camps and more. The Literacy in Theater program was also introduced last year, bringing plays based on popular children’s books to the CAC.
“And so these are some of the things the CAC can offer,” Bell said. “That’s our whole purpose is to raise money for the programs the CAC is able to provide for all ages. There’s the Texas Music Series, there’s all sorts of things going on. But we are especially interested in providing funds for children’s educational programing.”
She said goals for 2020 would be to add even more art education programs and provide more scholarships for students to attend summer art camps.
Bell added the Contemporaries are grateful for the support of the community.
“This is a wonderful community and there is a growing movement to have a greater emphasis on the arts, because that’s an economic advantage,” she said. “That is something that can be used in the economic development of the area. People are attracted to communities that have a lively and very vibrant art community.”