Recap:: Fabulous Fun for Binational Friends

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written by Tami Jones | photography by Jose Ruigomez

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When one asks you to attend a fundraising gala to report on the food, drink and event, you don’t say no.  On Saturday, February 5th I had the extreme pleasure of attending the 9th Annual Dos Aguilas event hosted by the San Diego Natural History Museum in Balboa Park.  I spent 4 years planning non-profit events so you can imagine my delight at having only two jobs for the entire evening; gathering material for Giving Scene Magazine and salivating over the finest cuisine and drink from both sides of the border.  I couldn’t be more pleased about my recent career change.

The Dos Aguilas Gala is a fundraising event benefiting the San Diego Natural History Museum’s bi-national education and scientific research programs.  Our own infinitely talented, Marie Tahan Daniels co-chaired this year’s event with San Diego Natural History Museum’s immediate past Board Chair, Eleanor Navarra.   After a beautiful dance showcase by Malashock Dance Company, the ladies took center stage and beautifully set the tone for the evening.

The night’s honorees were 8 time co-chairs and cross-border community volunteers Yolanda Walther-Meade and Yolanda S. Walther-Meade. Much of the night’s success is attributed to the beautiful mother/daughter duo for their incredible work raising awareness and funds for the museum.   Both honorees are honorably active in a number of bi-national non-profit organizations and graciously continue to provide the community with a richer understanding of the Baja California/Southern California region.

The food and drink was generously donated from both sides of the border from 13 restaurants and caterers such as Nobu, The Marine Room and La Diferencia from Tijuana, Mexico.  I, as a writer, found it my noble duty to sample absolutely everything including all 14 hand-made chocolates being offered by ex-engineer/turned expert chocolatier, Asra Razzaque from Allure Chocolat.  Make yourselves familiar people; she’s a rising star.  Guests profoundly appreciated the delicious tequila tasting station provided by Bracero Tequila and the Imperial Shag from the Searsucker mixologist. Throughout the evening as attendees were “sipping tequilas” SDNHM did a fine job reminding us why bi-national understanding, education and partnership is so important in our region.

The fashion, as always at events such as these, was extravagant and the women were lavishly adorned; no surprise as the VIP reception was hosted amidst the museum’s current special exhibit, All That Glitters. The jewels were TO DIE FOR! If you haven’t been, GO.

Overall the event raised $114,000 with net proceeds directly benefiting the binational Baja Region research and education programs of the San Diego Natural History Museum. More than 300 of San Diego and Baja California’s finest were in attendance to support these important programs and research initiatives.  Although there were moments of complete embarrassment by me trying to keep up with younger honoree Yolanda Walter S. Meade’s expert dancing capabilities, (apparently I’m not quite the dancer my imagination leads me to believe) I managed to discover yet another deserving cause contributing to the social good.

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