Grande Dames Tea Sold Out; Hand-Made Fascinators on Sale

Grande Dames Tea Sold Out; Hand-Made Fascinators on Sale

Press Release ( - FORT MYERS, Fla. - Feb 24, 2017 - Tickets are sold out for the Ninth Annual Grande Dames Tea March 14 presented by the PACE Center for Girls of Lee County.

A total of 406 tickets have been sold to the tea honoring Patricia Carroll of Fort Myers, Beverly McNew of Fort Myers, and the late Lalai Sapp Hamric of Fort Myers.

For those interested in joining the waiting list should tickets become available, please call Jessica McAfee at 239-425-2366, ext. 2315.

“We are very grateful to our community and our sponsors for making this event the spectacular success that it has been year after year,” said PACE Lee Executive Director Meg Geltner.

Eunice and Alexandra Bremner are the title sponsors for the Grande Dames Tea in honor and loving memory of Berne Davis, Barbara B. Mann and Eleanore Kleist, the first class of Grande Dames honored at this event.

Major event sponsors are Edison National Bank, Galloway Family of Dealerships, R. S. Walsh Landscaping, Famous Dave’s Restaurant, U.S. Sugar, the Daniel R. & Anne M. Harper Foundation, Broadway Palm, Caloosa Tent & Rental, Ruth Messmer Florist, and Noela Chocolates.  Media sponsors are The News-Press Media Group, Grandeur Magazine and Susan Bennett Marketing & Media.

Michael Jung, The News-Press Media Group President and Publisher, will serve as master of ceremonies.

The PACE girls are once again creating handmade fascinators that are available for sale.  Most hats will be $50 each with a limited number of specialty hats for $100.  These original creations will be available on a first come, first serve basis.  For purchasing information, call Jessica McAfee at 239-425-2366, ext. 2315.

Chair of the Grande Dames Tea is Nancy Finch with Kathy Toll serving as co-chair.  Both women also are members of the PACE Lee Board of Directors.

This is the ninth year of the historic Grande Dames Tea.  Previous honorees have included the late Berne Davis, the late Eleanore Kleist and the late Barbara B. Mann in 2009; Jeanne Bochette, the late Helen Hendry and the late Veronica Shoemaker in 2010; Myra Daniels, Kathleen Nealon and the late Mimi Straub in 2011; Michel Doherty, Mavis Miller and Anna “Boots” Tolles in 2012; Thelma Hodges, the late Helen O’Rourke McClary and Ettie Francis Walsh in 2013; Barbara Norris Brown, the late Sarah Sciple and Margaret Sirianni in 2014; Sharlene Hamel Dozier, M. Jacqueline McCurdy and Melvin Morgan in 2015; and Betty Anderson, Rusty Brown and Dr. Geraldine Burchard Nobles in 2016.

The Grande Dames Tea was originated by PACE Center for Girls of Lee County to honor women who have played major roles in Southwest Florida history through decades of service, philanthropy and helping others.

The agenda for the tea will include interaction between the PACE girls and the three Grande Dames, in a question and answer format that Finch and Toll said “is sure to be thought-provoking and poignant.”

PACE Center for Girls, Inc., is a non-residential delinquency prevention program targeting the unique needs of girls, ages 11 to 18 years old, facing challenges such as academic failure and truancy, physical and sexual abuse, domestic violence, substance abuse, foster care, neglect, death of a parent, and family history of incarceration.

PACE is a Florida-based, not for profit organization, and the only statewide prevention program for adolescent at-risk girls in the nation.  In the past year, the Lee County program provided 103 girls with education, counseling, training and advocacy resulting in 94 percent having no involvement with juvenile justice within one year of leaving PACE, 86 percent improving their academic performance and 89 percent remaining in school or obtaining employment three years after leaving PACE.  As a result, PACE reduces the significant long term costs associated with teen pregnancy, substance abuse, unemployment and long term economic dependency.

PACE accepts referrals from the juvenile justice system, the Department of Children & Families, school personnel, community services agencies, parents, family members, friends and self-referrals.

For information about PACE, please contact PACE Development Manager Sara Jordan at (239) 425-2366, ext. 2312, or visit

Source : PACE Center for Girls - Lee



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