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Audubon’s birds of a feather gala to be night of nonstop music, eating and cascarones

By Alexis White

Walking on eggshells will not be a concern when the Sociedad Audubon de México holds Birds of a Feather, a benefit gala that will take place on Thursday, July 24, at the Jardines de Matilda, Pila Seca 36. The evening gets underway at 7:30pm, and includes nonstop eating, dancing and cascarones, the colorful eggs filled with confetti and traditionally blessed upon the heads of unsuspecting passersby during Carnivale. Birds of a Feather cascarones will hold prize-winning messages to Gala attendees who purchase them.

Benefit Dinner Dance
Sociedad Audubon de México Birds of a Feather Gala
Honoring Linda Whynman
Thu, Jul 24 at 7:30pm
Jardines de Matilda
Pila Seca 36
Individual Tickets at 850 pesos or US$70, and Legacy Tickets at 3,000 pesos or US$240

Mexico’s only Audubon organization and among the oldest nonprofits in San Miguel de Allende, the society will pay tribute to Linda Whynman at its gala. Whynman, who served as Audubon’s president for seven years, is now president emeritus. Proceeds from the benefit will help fund Kids + Nature, Audubon’s new educational program for children who attend schools in San Miguel and the surrounding communities. Kids + Nature is designed to foster concern for the environment by encouraging conservation, instilling a sense of pride in the natural wonders that abound in our community, and enhancing these youngsters’ awareness of the flora and fauna that live here.

Birds of a Feather is limited to 200 guests, and tickets are available in three categories: Individual tickets at $850 pesos or US$70, Legacy tickets at 3,000 pesos or US$240, and reserved tables for eight at 6,800 pesos or US$560. Legacy ticket purchases, which go to Audubon’s Environmental Legacy Fund, entitle the purchaser to two Gala tickets, a one-year Audubon family membership with all benefits included, special Gala seating, Legacy recognition in the Gala program and a commemorative gift. Individual and Legacy tickets can be purchased at Camino Silvestre’s two locations, Zacateros 46 and Correo 43, and at La Noche Piano Bar, Mesones 101. All three categories of tickets can be purchased by credit card at the Audubon website [].

Audubon’s cascarones will contain numbers for prizes that relate to the theme of birds and nature. Included among the prizes are a four-night, best-bungalow stay at Majahua Palms in Troncones, an eco-resort area located northwest of Zihuatanejo on the Pacific coast of the State of Guerrero; a guided kayak outing for four on the Presa Allende that will be followed by brunch; a half-day leisurely country horseback ride; home goods from the Audubon de Mexico collection of Abrazos featuring San Miguel Designs by Patrice Wynne; fanciful masks, jewelry and home décor.

Among the mask creators are Ivy del Pozzo and Heidi LeVasseur. Del Pozzo, who had a long career in costume design for the ballroom industry, including “Dancing with the Stars,” is one half of the “Dream Team” at Coldwell Banker in San Miguel. LeVasseur, an artist and former art teacher, is co-owner of Casa de la Cuesta located at Cuesta de San Jose 32. The B&B is the home to the Other Face of Mexico mask museum, and a folk art gallery where LeVasseur often gives presentations on the history and techniques behind many of Mexico’s most famous textiles and handicrafts.

Audubon’s belief in a sustainable environment carries through on a number of levels. “We seek opportunities that create economic benefits for local people,” said April Gaydos, Audubon’s president, “and currently are training women from colonia Obraje to make delicate jeweler’s wire bird nests with pearl eggs that hang from sterling silver chains. These necklaces will be featured cascarone prizes at the gala,” she explained. “We also are working with Gregorio Juarez Sanchez, a tinsmith who specializes in birds, butterflies and other elements of nature. He is designing a special Audubon collection featuring birds, and a pair of snowy egrets will also be a featured cascarone prize at the gala,” she added.

Birds of a Feather will include a champagne and hors d’oeuvres reception followed by hot/cold and dessert canapé service that will last throughout the evening. It will be catered by Dos Suecos, the husband-wife team of Anders and Kajsa Akerblom Litzén. There will be a cash bar.

Johnny Favourite, the proprietor and host of La Noche Piano Bar, Mesones 101, will provide continuous music. He is bringing a swing band and a combo. Favourite, whose repertoire runs from the Great American Songbook — a canon of the most important and influential American popular songs of the 20th century, to Soul to classic rock and more, is a former recording artist and Juno (Canadian Grammy) Award winner.

The Jardines de Matilda, a special venue of Hotel Matilda, is an outdoor setting of spacious grounds, mature gardens and trees. The gala will be tented and within the space there will be a large dance floor.

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