Celebration Chair Gala is May 2

Published 10:50 am Saturday, April 10, 2004

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- Due to overwhelming public response, the Celebration Chair Gala has changed venues and times.
The benefit event will now be held at the Riverfront Cafe, 219 N. Front St. in downtown Niles, on Sunday, May 2, from 4 to 7 p.m.
The change of venue from the Niles Art Association gallery in the Fisher Building, provides an increased capacity and will allow more people to participate in the event.
The Celebration Chair Gala is being sponsored by the Niles Main Street Initiative, Niles Art Association and the Main Street Promotions Committee.
More than 40 originally decorated chairs, stools, ladders and step stools have been donated by local artists to be auctioned off at the event to support the sponsoring organizations.
The gala's festivities will also include music by the Bill Nicks Trio, Hors D'oeuvres and a featured selection of wines from southwestern Michigan vineyards including Heart of the Vineyard, Tabor Hills, Lemon Creek and St. Julian.
On Monday afternoon, members of the Main Street Promotions Committee met at the Downtown Development Authority office to prepare 500 invitations for the gala to be sent out.
Wakevainen said the gala will be open to anyone wishing to attend, so even if you do not receive an invitation in the mail, you are still encouraged to make reservations.
On April 13, the public will be able to view the original artwork as the chairs will be displayed in various store windows up and down Main Street in downtown Niles. The displays will include a brief statement by the artist and some biographical information.
A press release states the aim of the gala is to celebrate the progress made thus far in the renovation of many of the historic buildings in downtown Niles.
Main Street Promotions Committee chairman Gloria Cooper said the funds raised for the committee will be used to create excitement in the downtown area.
Cooper said the committee's goal is to bring three or four major events to downtown Niles every year. She is excited about the prospects of the Celebration Chair Gala and said the event is a testament to the Niles community working together for the common goal of improving our city.
Cooper, who has been involved with the City of Niles since the 1960s, said it is great to see the Niles Downtown Development Authority, Niles City Council, Four Flags Chamber of Commerce and Niles community members all working together.
Tickets for the Celebration Chair Gala are available from the Main Street Initiative office at 687-4332. The price of tickets without dinner will be $40 for an individual and $75 for couples. With dinner, tickets will be $50 for an individual and $100 per couple. Dinner will include a choice of prime rib with garlic potatoes or salmon with a dill sauce. Reservations are limited to 300 individuals.