With a journey around the world, the Cambria Somerset Heart Ball will help people live longer, healthier lives.
The official gala will take place on February 19 at the Sunnehanna Country Club, 1000 Sunnehanna Drive, Westmont.
It is one of the American Heart Association’s premier fundraising events, locally and nationally.
The event will begin with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7:15 p.m.
“The American Heart Association has held the Heart Ball in more than 150 communities, and people are coming together in common purpose to raise critical funds needed to continue our work,” said Brooke Greybush, Director of the division of Cambria, Blair and Center counties. for the association of the heart.
“Throughout our campaign, we celebrate our milestones, thank our sponsors and honor our heroes, and we get to achieve something bigger than ourselves.”
She said that after hosting the event virtually last year due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns, it’s wonderful to welcome people in person.
“We’re excited to be in person again, and it shows some of the progress that’s been made,” Greybush said.
“We are thrilled to be able to celebrate with some of our healthcare heroes, as they have been on the front lines throughout this pandemic, fighting for people with heart disease, strokes and immune systems. weakened. This gives us the opportunity to see them in person and to applaud them.
‘Around the world’
This year’s theme is “Around the World”.
“It’s a great year to have this theme,” Greybush said.
“For the past two years of the pandemic, many of us have been unable to travel, so we will be bringing distant lands to Johnstown.
“Our goal is to showcase some of our wonderful countries across our seven different continents through cultural cuisine, ethnic music and fun decor.”
The dinner menu will offer a global experience with dishes from the Middle East, Greece, Puerto Rico, Italy, Mexico and France.
“It includes a meal of an array of cultural foods and appetizers,” Greybush said.
“We have students from the Greater Johnstown Career and Technology Center who help prepare our desserts, and we’re excited to include them.”
A silent auction will feature jewelry, getaways, golf outing packages, gym memberships and restaurant gift certificates.
The live auction includes a portrait session and overnight stay at the Pierre Hotel in New York, a beachfront getaway at St. James’ Club & Villas in Antigua, four club seats for a Pittsburgh Penguins game and an eight-day European river cruise from Viking Cruises. cruise.
“The European river cruise is the highlight and worth nearly $7,000, and I’m so impressed we were able to get it locally,” Greybush said.
Entertainment will be provided by members of the Principal String Quartet of the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra, who will perform classical pieces inspired by cultures around the world.
A Brazilian jazz program arranged by 2007 Latin Grammy nominee Flavio Chamis will also be presented by musicians from Pittsburgh.
“He’s internationally known, and he’s putting together a program just for this event,” Greybush said.
During the event, the Open Your Heart Appeal will offer attendees the opportunity to make donations to the heart association which will be used for research, developing guidelines to improve patient care and help people reduce their risk factors for heart disease and stroke.
This year’s Open Your Heart Appeal will feature the story of John Augustine, Administrative Director of the Greater Johnstown Career and Technology Center and member of the Heart Ball leadership team, who will speak about surviving heart disease and promoting heart health.
“Almost 10 years ago I survived a viral heart attack,” he said.
“I woke up from a medically induced coma, recovered and started living again. I appreciate every day and am honored to be involved with the American Heart Association and to share my story with the others.
The Heart Hall of Fame will induct Dr. Ehab Morcos, Interventional Cardiologist and Medical Director of the Cardiology Service Line at UPMC Somerset.
The award is given to a healthcare professional who is making a difference locally and fulfilling the mission of the American Heart Association in Cambria or Somerset counties.
“Dr. Morcos truly puts his patients first in everything he does,” said Andy Rush, CEO of UPMC Somerset.
“To ensure that patients have access to the cardiology care they need, Dr. Morcos takes many shifts, covers many overtime calls and works very long hours.
“He is an expert in his field and has advocated for many new interventional cardiology technology upgrades at UPMC Somerset.
“In addition to the care he provides at UPMC Somerset, he has been on several mission trips, where he spends 16 hours a day providing heart care to those who would otherwise not have access to it.”
Last year’s virtual event raised $71,000, allowing the heart association to fund ongoing research and programs.
“Our goal this year is $100,000,” Greybush said.
“We are relentlessly focused on the heart of our community.
“Through the Heart Ball campaign, we celebrate our collective success in driving change, funding science and improving behaviors.”
The gala is chaired by William Caldwell, Market President of Conemaugh Health System and CEO of Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center.
“Like so many others, heart disease is very personal to me,” he said.
“My father had a serious heart condition at a very young age and it affected our family deeply.
“Being involved with the American Heart Association is one way for us to make a meaningful change in our community. Awareness, education, and lifestyle changes are a start.
Sean Eiler of WJAC-TV will be the emcee.
Attendees must present a negative COVID-19 test prior to the event.
Proof of a negative test can be provided either by taking a rapid test at a testing site on the day of the event or by taking a photo of a negative home test on the day of the event and bringing to the gala.
Masks will be mandatory.
Tickets are $140 per person.
Table sponsorships are available.
One must reserve. No tickets will be sold at the door.
Tickets can be purchased online at www.cambriaheartball.heart.org or by calling 717-730-1713.