Groovy Guests Boogie Down At Disco Daze Wine & Dine
Story and photos by Lisa Perry
Horizons Wine & Dine
at Colorado Academy Campus Center benefiting Horizons Program at Colorado Academy at 6:30 p.m.
Whether they lived it or just watched it in a movie, guests at this year’s Disco Daze Wine & Dine were whisked back to a shiny-polyester, “Saturday Night Fever” time when people were enticed to do the Hustle en masse. Even without a designated area for dancing, classic 1970s club hits inspired spontaneous boogie-oogie moves throughout the evening at Colorado Academy Campus Center.
Tim Wachuta (left) and John Fenley. Move over, John Travolta!
The annual, themed Wine & Dine event is the primary fundraiser for Horizons at Colorado Academy, a year-round enrichment program to help disadvantaged kids achieve academic success. On Thursday, Feb. 18, more than 300 mostly costumed supporters were able to spend the evening noshing nonstop on tasty tidbits and scrumptious spirits from Denver’s best chefs, eateries and purveyors.
Thanh Luony is dressed to the nines…and the ’70s.
With a sparkling array of niceties, guests placed strategic bids on silent-auction items, and the live auction was led by emcee Tom Kimball, former president of Colorado Academy’s alumni association board. The purpose of the evening wasn’t forgotten, as Horizons student Edith Villalobos spoke to the crowd about her own 17-year journey with Horizons that began in kindergarten and continued on to her college success. She was introduced by Horizons Executive Director Jessie Skipwith.
Horizons at Colorado Academy, part of a national network in 17 states, is a non-profit program that offers student enrichment designed specifically for Denver Public School children from low-income families. The program is committed to the development of the whole child through experiences that enhance self-esteem, foster responsibility, build problem-solving skills, and encourage a life-long interest in learning. It emphasizes academic enrichment, social growth with structured group dynamics, swimming lessons and sports participation, life-skills, cultural experiences and the arts. Horizons students use Colorado Academy facilities, bus transportation, dining services and educational resources, and many student and parent volunteers from the school provide program support.
Horizons is entering its 19th year at Colorado Academy and serves more than 140 students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through 10. The program has a proven track record providing on average 3-4 months in academic gains over just six weeks in the summer, a time during which children would normally lose up to three months of skills. Horizons can provide two healthy meals per day for each student during the summer program. Through year-round “Super Saturday” programming, students stay connected to their Horizons teachers and peers. The year-to-year retention rate of students is 98 percent.
Colorado Academy’s program is among the first in the country to develop a Horizons high school component. Students in this age group take part in activities such as as college visits, application “boot camps” and interviewing skills. Horizons faculty and staff salaries and program operating costs are provided through generous support from the community and other foundations. For more information, please visit: http://www.coloradoacademy.org/Page/Programs (select Horizons from the drop-down menu).
Guests hustled by silent-auction art on the way to registration.
Mia and Kevin Bearly
Mini-lava lamps and vinyl decorated the cabaret tables.
Steuben’s Ryan Layman (left) and Ace’s Randy Layman
Scott Patterson and committee member Andrea LeCoq
Steuben’s executive chef Brandon Biederman (left) and Josh Wolkon
Ahh Vo (left) and Anne Rademeyer of Pho Bowlevard
Scott Smith and Jaylee Adam, of Molly’s Spirits
Tim Myers, owner of Strange Craft (right), serves Mark Kay
Colorado Academy staffers (l to r): Buck McKenna, Stephanie Sanders and Gabe Bernstein
Representing Horizons families: Gerardo and Nelly Venzor
(l to r): Ethan Larson, Kim Carpenter and Lucas Clark, of Mad Greens
Committee members Justine Needham (left) and Janie Ramseier hustled through the duties at the wine toss.
(l to r): Travis Dennis, with committe members Kendall Slutzky and Lisa Dennis
Colt & Gray’s Nelson Perkins (left) and Chris Oertel
(l to r): Horizons Executive Director Jessie Skipwith, Doug and Christin Johnson, and committee member Laura Lee Gastis
Thanh Luony is dressed to the nines…and the ’70s.
Greta Weisser (left) and Katie MacPhail
Entering “Studio Horizons”: Jim and Karen Cannon
Boogie on, Disco Daze guests!
Fernanda Ubillos (left) and Sue Counterman
(l to r): Corey Sampson, Adrian Green, Allie Bronston, “Angelina Jolie,” and Daniel Lopez
Liz and Chris Wright
(l to r): Tami Jorden, Richard Carty and Tom Jorden
Strategic bidding at the silent auction
(l to r): Stuart Jensen, Allison Peters Jensen, and Dan and Fran Carson
(l to r): Christin Johnson, Michael Slutzky and Doug Johnson
Lindsay Farrell (left) and Alyssa Beski
Colorado Academy’s head of school, Mike Davis (left) and Doug Smooke
Committee member Kathy and John Fenley
Amy McPheeters (left) and event co-chair Purcell Allen
Tim Wachuta (left) and John Fenley: Move over, John Travolta!
(l to r): Andre Archie, Pete and Theresa Clowes, and Eleanora Archie
(l to r): Jessica Ohly, Roy Lapidus and Dave Colodny
(l to r): Thomassen Davis, board member Ivett Drawe, Tami Jorden and Mike Drawe
Eric Whytsell (left) with Steve and Yama Foreman
Lexy Lowe (left), with Sabino and Lilli Villalobos
Michael and committee member Kendall Slutzky
(l to r): Jocelyn Ese, Elizabeth Kirkpatrick and Samantha Thompson
Emcee Tom Kimball, past president of the CA alumni association board
Dick and Jenne’ Havey
Jessie Skipwith (left) and Steven Hammer
(l to r): Kevin Lontz, Julie Caldwell, Rennie Howard and Linda Geoffrey
(l to r): Kathy and board/committe member Jim Kidder, board member Doug and Diane Robinson, and board member Bryan Ritz
It’s all in the wrist at the wine toss.
Grabbing another tasty tidbit
(l to r): Nancy and emcee Tom Kimball, and board member Dickson Griswold
Board member Chris Wright (left) and Bruce Dodge
John Needham (left) and Mike Ramseier
Christine and Rick Zimmerman
(l to r): Committee member/board member Jim Kidder, Ryan Anderson, Miguel Martinez, Jose Martinez and Cathy Kidder
Lauren Lauchli and Geoff Smart
Tim Burleigh (left) and Roger Burleigh
Gary and board member Leslie Howard
(l to r): Mitra Devon, Mona and John Ferrugia, and Catherine Lasky
Jessie Skipwith, executive director of Horizons
Edith Villalobos talks about her 17-year history as a Horizons participant, from kindergarten through her successful college experience.
Executive chef Alexander Porter, of Colorado Academy
Carly Wolff (left) and Samantha Stuart, of Blake Street Tavern
Rachel Aguirre, Carol Bedin, Jennifer Bigger, Ginger Broaddus, Lisa Dennis, Allison Dodge, Jocelyn Ege, Sharlene Funk, Kathy Fenley, Laura Lee Gastis, Nina Henderson-Moore, Judy Jensen, Jim Kidder, Andrea LeCoq, Carie Manzo, Toi Massey, Lil McKean, Amy McPheeters, Janine Melberg, Justine Needham, Janie Ramseier, Catherine Rollhaus, Maggie Shapiro, Kendall Slutzky, Kim Spery, Jane Stanton, Kim Stone, Holly Stull, Sabine Taal, Carolyn Wachuta, Jen Wolkon, Maribeth Younger
Michael G. Davis, Ph.D., Colorado Academy Head of School; Jessie Skipwith, Horizons Program Executive Director
Edith Villalobos, Horizons graduate
Game sponsors: Alpine Buick & GMC, Atlantic Trust
Ace, Vesta Dipping Grill and Steuben’s: clam dip on RItz crackers, deviled eggs, pigs in a blanket, peanut butter cups; Blake Street Tavern: Swedish meatballs, carrot cake; CA chefs Paul Worley and Alex Porter: fondue station; City Bakery: cookies, dessert bars; Colt & Gray and Ste. Ellie: Oysters Rockefeller, cheese log, stuffed mushrooms; Dazbog Coffee: full-bodied coffee; Gourmet to Go: caramelized bacon rolls, pecan bar bites; Mad Greens: Doc Holliday salad; Molly's Spirits: premium wine-tasting table; Pho Bowlevard Asian Kitchen: lettuce wraps, Bahn Mi sandwiches; Strange Craft Beer Company: Breakfast Grapefruit IPA, Cherry Kriek, Farmhouse Ale, 1000 Barrels Imperial IPA; The Venzor family representing Horizons: chicken quesadillas
Chair Heather Miller, Vice Chair Bryan Ritz, Secretary David Jones, Chris Bittman, John Burstein '89, Ivette Drawe, Mike Fries, Dickson Griswold, Leslie Howard, David Jones '95, Jim Kidder '80, Brooke Bansbach Maloy '90, Heather Kemper Miller, Tricia Noble, Eliza Prall, Craig Ponzio, Bryan Ritz, Doug Robinson, Rob Sadler, Celia Sheneman, Minyoung Sohn, Rick Stone, Tim Walsh, Chris Wright, Maribeth Younger