More than 300 area residents attended Encore 2009, Genesee Community College Foundation’s annual holiday fundraising event. The December 9 gala continued the tradition of a fun and festive evening with new and old friends coming together in the spirit of raising funds for the College’s numerous scholarship programs. This event was the first time the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra (BPO) had played at Genesee since the opening of the Stuart Steiner Theatre in 1992.
Batavia residents Todd and Kathy Bender who attended with their children, chaired Encore 2009, and were assisted by a committee of over 20 community members. The new elements the Benders and the entire Encore committee brought to Encore were a huge success, especially the BPO. The orchestra was an overwhelming hit with all attendees. During their performance, conductor Paul Ferington announced, the BPO was up for their third Grammy nomination. Also during the evening, a guest-conductorship was awarded to Mary Alice Yaiko who conducted a riveting rendition of the holiday tune ‘Sleigh Ride’.
The evening began with a private prelude reception with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra conductor, Paul Ferington. A gourmet reception with all new food selections, for all Encore guests continued in the Batavia Campus’ William W. Stuart Forum. Guests then proceeded to the Stuart Steiner Theatre for a holiday pops concert with the BPO, and then afterward enjoyed delectable desserts in the College’s Forum.
Contributions totaled more than $55,000 and are still coming in, said Foundation executive director Richard Ensman. “We deeply appreciate the generous support of our Student Scholarship program. Encore is truly an investment in the future leaders of our communities.” The Foundation would also like to thank Five Star Bank, the lead corporate benefactor, for their continued support of Encore.
The Genesee Community College Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to providing volunteer and philanthropic support to Genesee Community College. Formed in 1986, the Foundation has been instrumental in providing more than 3,000 scholarships over the last decade, assisting in the funding of the Conable Technology Building and the Humphrey Student Union, and the expansion of College Village, Genesee’s student residence.
For photographs of Encore 2009, please go to:
The Bender family of Batavia, NY with BPO conductor Paul Ferington: http://marketing.genesee.edu/images/Benders_Ferington.jpg
The BPO on stage in the Stuart Steiner Theatre: http://marketing.genesee.edu/images/BPO_09.jpg