Teen awareness group gala TAG Gala Raises funds and awareness

Article and Photos by Becky Hoving '17

The Teen Awareness Group hosted its semi-annual gala on March 7, raising over $10,000. The gala aimed to raise awareness about TAG’s message and financially support itself by having student speakers and a silent auction.

Parents of TAG members, as well as community members, were invited to attend the event, which was held at Shorehaven Golf Club in Norwalk.

“What’s great about this event is we are getting to talk to people,” Jack Norman ’17, TAG co-president, said. “We are getting to tell people why TAG is so important, and because of that, people are so generous in their donations and in participating in the auction.”

In addition to local business gift cards and tickets, there were some student donations to the silent auction. Pebbles and Posies, a terrarium business run by Hillary O'Neill '19, donated centerpieces that were also on sale at the gala. Above, TAG alumni Jess Spector's personalized college vans are on display as part of the auction.

Auction items ranged from personalized college vans to restaurant gift cards to Knicks games and Seth Meyers tickets.

“All of the members in TAG, including the two presidents and the advisors, all donated something we could find or pay for ourselves,” Claire Lonergan ’17, a board member on TAG, said.

Members of TAG wore red ribbons in honor of founder of TAG, Chris Lemone, who passed away in October 2015. Above, Brandon Adrian '18 admires the display made in his memory for the event.
Will Rosenthal '19 and Nick Rossi '19 played live music for the gala.

When not rotating around the silent auction tables, family and friends were invited to listen to student speakers present on mental illness, driving under the influence and the importance of positive police-youth relationships. TAG also showed a short self-produced documentary featuring interviews with its members.

Norman, who has been a member of TAG all four years of high school, hoped the event would help financially support the club long after he’s graduated.

“The last time TAG held this kind of event was my freshman year, and we are still working off of the money we raised then,” he said. “I am hoping that Lauren and I can leave a legacy that financially supports tag for the next four years.

Co-Presidents Jack Norman '17 and Lauren Stack '17 smile in front of a display of member bios. Each member of TAG wrote a small blurb about what TAG means to them and about who they are for a display.

Norman later emphasized how much he appreciates the event’s ability to spread awareness about TAG’s message and events throughout the year.

“This is more than just a club or community service,” he said. “It is a group of students that are truly passionate in the message we are sending, and I think it’s important for the community to see that.”

TAG members invited their family and friends to the event. Above, Reeve Jackson '17, a board member, smiles with her father.

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