Bobby Valentine to be auctioneer for Greenwich YWCA annual Persimmon Ball
GREENWICH — The YWCA Greenwich’s annual Persimmon Ball, “New York New York,” slated for Friday at the Hyatt Regency in Old Greenwich, and will feature a guest appearance from Bobby Valentine.
The Stamford athletic legend iswell known to New York baseball fans: he played for the Mets during some of their darkest years in the late 1970s and managed the team at some of their brightest years, including the 2000 Subway Series showdown with the Yankees.
Valentine will be adding his celebrity and assistance to the fundraiser as guest auctioneer. The black-tie event annually attracts close to 500 attendees.
“This is our biggest fundraiser of the year,” YWCA Greenwich President and CEO Mary Lee Kiernan said. “It’s critically important for people to show up and get involved. We want to provide our free services to people in need in the community. By people attending and showing their support for YWCA Greenwich, we can continue our work.”
The fundraiser boosts many of YWCA Greenwich’s programs and helps provide scholarships to local children for pre-school and camp as well as for the YWCA’s Domestic Abuse Services. YWCA Greenwich is the only licensed and accredited provider of domestic abuse services in town, offering counseling, shelter, two 24/7 hotlines, court services and crisis intervention, all of which are provided free of charge.
The “New York, New York” theme for the ball was the brainchild of event co-chairs Brooke Bohnsack, Catherine Holden, Christine Georgopulo and Theresa Rogers Matthews. Kiernan raved about the show planned for Friday night.
Attendees will see a New York-style checkered cab as part of the decorations, a NYC subway turn-style scene, a streetscape from New York and a 360-degree view of Manhattan similar to sitting in the Rainbow Room at Rockefeller Center.
Valentine’s involvement was announced this week.
Owner of a popular restaurant in Stamford, Valentine is the executive director of athletics for Fairfield’s Sacred Heart University. Well known to sports fans in the area for his forceful personality, he led the Mets to the playoffs in 1999 and 2000, where they fell short in the World Series with the Yankees. He also led the way for charitable efforts involving the team after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
“We are so excited to be able to have Bobby Valentine appear and handle the live auction,” Kiernan said. “We reached out to him because of our “New York, New York” theme. We couldn’t think of someone who was more New York than Bobby and he was a perfect fit. He was thrilled to help us out.”
Tickets are still available and can be purchased online at www.ywcagreenwich.org/persimmon. The live auction led by Valentine is one component. A silent auction is available at www.501auctions.com/persimmon and online bidding is available.
Items up for bid for the silent auction include tickets to a Mets game in a luxury suite; diamond earrings; vacation getaways; Washington, D.C., meetings with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and U.S. Rep. Jim Himes (D-4th); time at the Greenwich Police Department’s pistol range; scuba diving lessons; gourmet dining experiences; wine; tickets for the Greenwich Town Party; and a bowling party at Innes Arden.
Bidding is available without attending the event.