It was the largest night event on record at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
The Aquarium admitted nearly 2,800 tri-county residents free of charge, plus another 225 volunteers associated with the event – including chefs, community volunteers (Salinas Downtown Rotary and Monterey Cannery Row Rotary Club, Monterey High School students, and aquarium staff who were not working but who volunteered their time). There were additional people in the building who had been visiting the Aquarium during the day and who stayed into Evenings by the Bay for the fire benefit.
There were 25 chefs and 28 food stations; wines from Bernardus, Mercy and J. Lohr; and beer from North Coast Brewing Company were served. Coffee was donated by Carmel Valley Roasting Company and US Foods donated the apple juice for the kids’ area. (There were MANY other donations!)
There will be an online auction starting September 1st on Bidding for Good – open to anyone! Details to come.
The weekend’s events (farmers market at The Wharf Marketplace, cash donations from Salinas Valley agricultural companies, the Soberanes Fire Benefit at the Aquarium and direct donations to Community Foundation at the Aquarium event) generated roughly $180,000. The Aquarium event alone raised more than $110,000.
Bottom line: The events nearly DOUBLED the Community Foundation’s Soberanes Fire Fund in a single weekend – to a total of around $400,000.