Starlight Children’s Foundation New England Hosts Afternoon Tea to Honor Gary and Judi Vaillancourt Starlight Children’s Foundation New England Hosts Afternoon Tea to Honor Gary and Judi Vaillancourt by Tabitha Berg BOSTON, Mass. — Starlight Children’s Foundation New England is hosting a special Valentine’s event, Purses & Pearls, A Classic English Afternoon Tea, at the Four Seasons Hotel Boston on Saturday, Feb. 14 from 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. At the Tea, Starlight is honoring Gary and Judi Vaillancourt of Vaillancourt Folk Art with its prestigious Heart of Gold Award to acknowledge the couple’s longstanding commitment to seriously ill children in New England. Guests are invited to gather all the special women and girls in their lives, grab their favorite purses, adorn themselves with timeless pearls and join Starlight in brightening the lives of local seriously ill children and their families! Adult guests will delight in a delicious menu of teas, sandwiches and Valentine’s Day desserts, as well as enjoy exclusive shopping from regional artists and a silent auction featuring autographed purses from Desperate Housewives star, Teri Hatcher and Boston-based indie rock artist Juliana Hatfield. In keeping with Starlight’s family-focused mission, children are also invited to attend and experience the importance of philanthropy firsthand. Children will be served a special menu, spend time with Victorian era characters in costume, partake in cupcake-decorating and learn dining and tea-time etiquette from Judith Bowman, Protocol Consultant and author of Don’t Take the Last Donut: New Rules of Business Etiquette. Everyone will have the chance to create crafts, which will be sent to hospitalized children throughout New England. Starlight will present its Heart of Gold Award to Gary and Judi Vaillancourt of Vaillancourt Folk Art for their steadfast dedication to seriously ill children for nearly 20 years. The Heart of Gold Award is reserved for individuals with a deep commitment to children and a generous heart. Since 1990 Vaillancourt Folk Art Studios of Sutton, Massachusetts has partnered with Starlight in the creation of a limited edition chalkware “Starlight Santa.” This 19-year tradition has provided funding for Starlight New England’s programs and services helping seriously ill children and their families face the daily challenges of a chronic or life-threatening illness. The Vaillancourts’ annual donation has brightened the lives of thousands of children and their families through outpatient family activities and inpatient entertainment programs for hospitalized children. Adult tickets for Purses & Pearls are $55, and children’s tickets are $25. A table of 10 can be purchased for $500. Event parking is available at the Four Seasons at the discounted rate of $20. To purchase tickets, visit www.starlight.org/newengland. All gifts of more than $100 can be made in honor, in memory of, or in recognition of a special person or event, and these gifts will be listed in the event program. For more information including participating in the event program, sponsorship availability and ticket sales, please contact Jonelle Prill-Tate at 617-241-9911 or [email protected] About Starlight Children’s Foundation New England When a child or teenager has a serious medical condition, everyone in the family is affected. For 25 years, Starlight Children’s Foundation has been dedicated to helping seriously ill children and their families cope with their pain, fear and isolation through entertainment, education and family activities. Starlight’s programs have been proven to distract children from their pain, help them better understand and manage their illnesses, and connect families facing similar challenges so that no one feels alone. Through a network of offices, Starlight provides ongoing support to children, parents and siblings in all U.S. states and Canadian provinces with an array of outpatient, hospital-based and Web offerings. Programs are also delivered internationally through affiliates in Australia, Japan, and the United Kingdom.