Michael's Feat spring gala set for March 20 2009: Blacktie Optional

Michael's Feat spring gala set for March 20

The black-tie optional event scheduled from 7-11 p.m.

will feature appetizers, gourmet foods, premium open bar and desserts from Flaky Tart Bakery. The event will also feature live entertainment, dancing and a silent auction. Tickets are $100 per person and a table of 10 is $900. "In the children's story 'Hope for the Flowers,' young caterpillars struggle with challenges and crises in the hopes of transforming into beautiful butterflies," said Dana Puharic, chairwoman of Michael's Feat. "At Michael's Feat, our hope is that all of the little flowers we have the pleasure of helping will bloom and show their precious beauty within." This year, the Michael's Feat honorary chair is Kristin Belger. Belger is a professional graphic designer who has used her talent to transform the image of Michael's Feat. Michael's Feat came to know Belger and her husband, Jeff, after their son Nathaniel was born in 2005. Since then, Belger has donated hours upon hours of her creativity on Michael's Feat print materials. When asked to be this year's chair, Belger said, "From the phone cards we used during our son's seven-and-a-half months in the NICU to Dana's comforting presence and generous donation given to us at Nathaniel's wake, Michael's Feat will forever be embedded in our hearts &8212 assisting us through the most difficult time in our lives. The dedication and tireless efforts of everyone at Michael's Feat is evident when speaking to those families they have touched. I am grateful and honored to be a part of such an amazing foundation." As a tradition, Michael's Feat will once again honor a local family who has struggled in caring for their seriously ill newborn. Kristen and Rushil Sankpal of the Belford section of Middletown will be this year's recipients. Their son, Ethan Sankpal, was born at just 24 weeks and spent much of his early life in the hospital. Upon his arrival at home, the family took over much of his medical care and through their love and advocacy he continues to grow stronger every day.

"After nine long months spent in three different NICUs, Michael's Feat provided the additional home nursing care needed for us to bring our son Ethan home. Ethan has made so many gains since leaving the hospital in June. He is a happy, curious little boy who gets stronger and healthier every day. It is difficult to find words that sufficiently express our gratitude. The support we received from Michael's Feat allowed us to finally become a family. How do you thank someone for that We are humbled to be the honored family at this year's gala, but we truly feel that we should be honoring Dana and Adam Puharic and all of the individuals who make such an amazing charity possible," the Sankpals said.

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