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Mary and Dan Esmond Support Cancer Services with Annual Fundraiser
The fifth anniversary of Howard County’s popular “Saturday Soiree” fundraising event hit record numbers this year, attended by more than 200 community members and raising over $75,000 in support of cancer services at Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine (HCGH) and the Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center, a service of the hospital. The event was hosted in the Woodbine home of 17-year cancer survivor Mary Esmond, owner of Abbington Home, and her husband Dan Esmond.
During the poolside, Hawaiian-themed evening, guests were treated to traditional Hawaiian fare by Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion Cuisine and entertainment that included hula dancers and a fire dancer from the Magic of Hawaii Entertainment Co., owned by renowned Hawaiian ambassador Aaron Paki Allen.
“Our sponsors and guests helped us increase results more than 50% over last year. That kind of support, particularly in a challenging year for fundraising efforts overall, says a great deal about our community members and the important role that the Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center and Howard County General Hospital play in Howard County,” said Mary Esmond.
Sponsorships of the event totaled $22,700, with Karen and Robert Banas, Vice President of Leach Wallace Associates, Inc; Vicky and Joe Cutroneo, President of IP DataSystems, Inc; and Sherry and Mark Stull, Vice President of SunTrust Investment Services, Inc. as lead sponsors.
During the event’s live and silent auctions, top bidders included Morgan and Monica Adams, who bid for a trip to Maui, Hawaii and tennis lessons at Cattail with tennis professional Joe Mattingly; Doug Doudt, top contributor for the event’s combined five years, who bid on items that included a swim cap autographed by Michael Phelps; Bob and Laura Haney, who bid on various items, including sports gear, and Rich and Suzanne Arena, who bid on a private shopping spree at host Mary Esmond’s store, Abbington Home in Columbia.
Hosts Dan and Mary Esmond strategically shared in the ultimate live auction item donated by Steve and Cathy James of Reisterstown—a week’s stay at the luxurious and exclusive Scrub Island in the British Virgin Islands—with their friends and neighbors, Rob and Karen Banas and Joe and Vicky Cutroneo. The Esmonds also bid on and won Ravens club seats donated by Mary’s former colleague, Tim Ryan, publisher of The Baltimore Sun; University of Maryland women and men’s basketball suite tickets; and a lunch of politics and conversation with County Councilman Greg Fox.
Notable dignitaries who attended the event included Senator Allan Kittleman and wife Robin, Senator Jim Robey and wife Janet, Delegate Gail Bates and husband David, and Delegate Warren Miller and wife Jane. Councilman Greg Fox and wife Ilene, HCGH Senior Vice President of Planning and Marketing Paul Gleichauf and wife Suzanne, HCGH Chief Financial Officer James Young and wife Julie, and Vice President of Development for the Howard Hospital Foundation Chris McCabe also joined in the festivities.