Best Buddies International, a groundbreaking nonprofit that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), is pleased to announce its 21st Annual Best Buddies Miami Gala at Ice Palace Studios in Wynwood on Friday, November 17.
The 21st Annual Best Buddies Miami Gala is a spectacular event with hundreds of prominent locals and international guests gathering to celebrate the Best Buddies mission. This year’s Best Buddies Miami Gala will celebrate the organization’s expansion into India.
Guests will enjoy a gourmet dinner, partake in a top-notch auction and witness dazzling entertainment. During the Gala, Ralph Winter will be honored with the Spirit of Leadership award for his $1 million gift to Best Buddies that will be used to promote and expand the organization’s mission of friendship, jobs, and leadership development for individuals with IDD around the world.
“We are incredibly excited to celebrate Best Buddies’ expansion into India, where we hope to exemplify the true spirit of friendship and inclusion for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities,” says Anthony K. Shriver, Founder, Chairman & CEO of Best Buddies International. “Moreover, I am proud to celebrate the Best Buddies mission with some of our most dedicated supporters, participants, and volunteers. The Miami Gala is a fantastic way to thank and celebrate the achievements of our participants and supporters, as well as remind everyone of our mission and importance of the work that we do on behalf of individuals with special abilities.”
Each year, the Gala brings together Miami’s most notable residents and celebrities from around the globe. Among those expected to attend this year’s event includes: Best Buddies International’s Founder, Chairman & CEO Anthony K. Shriver and his wife, Alina Shriver; Actors Nolan Gould, Jason Lewis and Kevin McHale; Actress and Model Charlotte McKinney; Four-time Tour de France Winner Chris Froome; Miss Teen USA 2017 Sophia Dominguez-Heithoff; and International Pop-Artist Romero Britto. The evening will conclude with a special musical performance by four-time Grammy nominated, multi-platinum Australian rapper Iggy Azalea!
There will also be a number of one-of-a-kind items up for auction, including a limited edition Hublot Best Buddies Cycling Timepiece, a custom portrait by Romero Britto, and a once-in-a-life-time opportunity to be a part of Dolce & Gabbana’s Ready to Wear show in Milan, Italy, which includes a special meet and greet with Mr. Domenico Dolce and Mr. Stefano Gabbana.
The day’s festivities will kick-off bright and early with the Best Buddies Challenge: Miami, a 100K six-star cycling event, limited to just 50 cyclists, that starts and finishes at Marlins Park. The Challenge will be led by Tour de France winner Chris Froome, and pro cyclists George Hincapie and Christian Vande Velde.
As a result of phenomenal support from generous sponsors and donors, Best Buddies is able to extend its reach globally, and will continue to develop its presence through its eight formal programs — Best Buddies Ambassadors, Citizens, Colleges, e-Buddies, High Schools, Jobs, Middle Schools and Promoters— across the United States and in nearly 50 countries. Proceeds from the Gala will allow Best Buddies to continue making a meaningful impact in the lives of individuals with special abilities on a global scale.
Sterling Foundation Management and the The Ferraro Law Firm are the Friendship Sponsors of the event; Micky and Madeleine Arison Family Foundation, Carnival Corporation & PLC, Carnival Foundation, Celebrity Cruises, Chateau Gaby, Tracfone Wireless are the Employment Sponsors. Leadership Sponsors include the Abaco Wines, Braman Motors, Capital Trust Group, The GEO Group Foundation, Inc., IPC, Sheba Lucas, Mack Cycle & Fitness, Park West Foundation, Pepsi-Cola, Michael Schlesginer, Sandy & Tony Tamer and WSVN 7News.