Local romantics can buy a dinner with dancing for their valentines | ParkRecord.com

Local romantics can buy a dinner with dancing for their valentines

While 2018 is just a few days old, many romantics old and young are already thinking of February because of Feb. 14, Valentine's Day.

For many Parkites, the day to show their loves of their lives how much they mean to them will arrive five days earlier with the 13th annual Sweetheart Gala that will run from 6-11 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 9, at the St. Mary's Catholic Church grand hall, 1505 White Pine Canyon Road.

The night features a three-course dinner, catered by Utah Celebrations, a cash bar and dancing to live music performed by Park City High School's Varsity Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Director of Bands Chris Taylor, said volunteer Ben Ling.

"The Sweetheart Gala is Park City's best Valentine's date, and it's not just for parents of the students in the band," Ling told The Park Record. "It's for anyone who loves good food, big-band music and fun."

“The Sweetheart Gala is Park City’s best Valentine’s date, and it’s not just for parents of the students in the band...” Ben Ling, Sweetheart Gala volunteer

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Tickets for premium seats located next to the dance floor are $70. Standard seats are $60. Tickets can be purchased by visiting http://www.pcbands.net/sweetheartgala.

Doors open at 6 p.m. and dinner will be served at 6:45 p.m. Music and dancing will start at 8 p.m.

The menu will feature grilled chicken with chevre cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil chiffonade, top sirloin with horseradish and au jus. The dinner will also include garlic and herb risotto, broccolini almondine, pomegranate pecan salad and artisan breads and pastries.

Those who have special dietary needs can contact PC Bands ahead of time by emailing pcbands.sweetheartgala@gmail.com.

The event is a fundraiser for PC Bands, which is the band program at Park City High School and Treasure Mountain Junior High, Ling said.

"PC Bands encompasses all the different band groups and ensembles in both schools," he explained. "These kids practice more than 180 hours over the course of the school year. They come in every day before school from 6:30-7:30 a.m."

While attendees enjoy the meal, dancing and music, they will also have a chance to bid on items during a silent auction and win prizes during an opportunity drawing.

"We are currently seeking donations for the auction and drawing," Ling said.

Donations can include tickets for cultural, entertainment or sporting events; passes for fitness or recreational activities; gift certificates for restaurants, hotels or spas, and more, he said.

To donate items, contact Ann Last at 435-640-2151 or email annthelast@gmail.com

"The proceeds from tickets sales, the silent auction and the opportunity drawing will help the PC Bands program purchase equipment and music," Ling said. "The money will also help cover costs of running the program during the summer, because Mr. Taylor and [director of percussion] Bret Hughes bring in expert musicians and band teachers to help get the bands in shape for not only the parade season, but for the competitive field shows."

The different band combos that comprise PC Bands performs more than 50 free concerts every year, according to Ling.

"They'll play at various fundraising events for Running with Ed, The Park City Institute, Red Apple Gala and things like that," he said. "Some of the bands will also play some paying events like weddings in Park City and Salt Lake City, so if someone or an organization needs live music to spice up and event, they can contact PC Bands and schedule something."

The Marching Band alone performs every year in the Days of '47 Parade in Salt Lake City and during the Park City Fourth of July Parade, Ling said.

"It also represented Utah in Hawaii for the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor last year, and there are plans to represent the United States during the D-Day commemoration in France in 2019," he said. "So we kind of like to think these young musicians are spreading music and providing a soundtrack all over the community."

Since the fundraiser is essentially benefiting the students in the band program, they will all be working during the Sweetheart Gala.

"Some will usher people to their tables," Ling said. "Some will serve the food and bus the tables. And other kids will run the coat-check desk and run the silent auction and opportunity drawing."

Ling said PC Bands is grateful for St. Mary's Catholic Church for providing the venue.

"They are always great to work with," he said. "We enjoy working with them."

Last year the Park City Education Foundation became the official sponsor of the Sweetheart Gala.

"That allowed us to advertise the cash bar," Ling said with a laugh.

Tickets are on sale now for the 13th annual Sweetheart Gala, which will be held Friday, Feb. 9, at St. Mary's Catholic Church.

They can be purchased by visiting this website.