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Francis Allen’s Desert Roundup—The Living Desert Sets Annual Zoobilee Gala

Giraffes at The Living Desert.

Posted Monday, February 11, 2019 - 1:27 pm

Ever wonder where the expression“tall tale” came from? After a visit with the herd of giraffes at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens in Palm Desert, I’m convinced that it came about with stories of these magnificent creatures.

One way to find out is by attending The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens’ annual fundraising Zoobilee Gala on Saturday, March 2, 2019. Themed as “Party in the Outback,” guests will experience an evening of spirited beverages, Aussie entertainment, auction opportunities,“Down Under” dining and animal encounters.

The gala is co-presented by Harold Matzner, the king of Desert philanthropy, and Shellie Reade, the co-presenting sponsor of the event. The evening will also honor Patti and Jack Grunfhofer for their generous support of The Living Desert.

Guests are encouraged to dress in Outback chic for the event that begins at 5:30 p.m. in the Patti and Jack Grunfhofer Plaza and Living Legacy Garden followed by dinner, entertainment and a live auction.

The Grunfhofers are being honored for their leadership in helping to complete phase one of the current capital campaign, Pride of the Desert.  Grunfhofer Plaza is a now open and welcoming guests with a striking new entrance into the zoo.

Once inside, guests will be treated to unique experiences such as up-close animal encounters plus live and silent auctions.

Additional event sponsors include: Diamond sponsors – Peggy and Hal Bernthal; Platinum sponsors  -Joy and Harry Goldstein, Candace and Jon Holzgrafe and JaAnn McGrath; Gold sponsors Sharon and Dean Balizell and Donna MacMillan; Silver sponsors Bright Event Rentals, Jan Salta and BJ and Van Skilling; Bronze sponsors -Suzan and Bill Appel, Lu Barnes, the Greater Palm Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau and Karen Miles.

The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is a nonprofit, accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums ensuring the highest standards of all aspects of animal care, care, education, conservation, public service and operations. The Zoo is active in conversation research, breeding programs and education initiatives around the world, as well as in its own community. The Zoo has been a top attraction in the Palm Springs area for nearly 50 years.


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