On Saturday, October 13, more than 730 committed environmentalists gathered in a redwoods-inspired tent in San Francisco’s Union Square to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Save the Redwoods League, the only nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and stewarding the iconic coast redwood and giant sequoia forests of California throughout their range. The event and its after-party raised over $1.9 million to support the League’s redwood education and parks support programs, which will serve 18,000 students this year and millions of park visitors with improved access and amenities within the parks.
CBS News correspondent Lee Cowan hosted the evening, which included a concert performance by Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Friends, with special guest John Mayer, at the nearby August Hall, followed by an after-party with DJ ZEBUEL.
“As much as it’s our mission to protect and restore redwood forests for their global significance, it’s equally our responsibility to connect people with California’s world-renowned redwood parks,” said League president and CEO Sam Hodder. “Hosting this gala was a first for us, and thanks to the enormous generosity of our supporters, we marked our centennial with renewed capacity to bring thousands of students from all over California into the redwood parks and enhance the visitor experiences for everyone who ventures into our state parks.”
The festivities began with a magical outdoor cocktail reception that featured the talents of master illusionist JB Benn, followed by an elegant conifer-inspired dinner for 730 guests prepared by McCalls Catering & Events under a redwoods-inspired tent designed by Stanlee Gatti. A live auction featuring one-of-a-kind redwood adventures inspired great enthusiasm from gala patrons.
Honorary co-chairs of the Centennial Celebration Gala were Judith and Richard (Dick) Otter and Charlotte Shultz and the Honorable George Shultz. Gala co-chairs were Sandy Donnell and Wendy Hayward (in memoriam). After-party co-chairs were Nikko Lubinski and Kelly Tarapani. Members of the planning committee included Amy Berler, Stephen Butler, Rosemary Cameron, James Campbell, Melissa Harris, Caryl Hart, Allegra Krasznekewicz, Nikko Lubinski, Alette Mahler, Jessica Montague, Cece Murray, Cameron Phleger, Cristina Pitzer, Teresa Porter, Ethan Ravage, Kelly Tarapani, Andrea Testa-Vought, Melinda Thomas, Nadine Weil, Mark Wentworth, Mary Wright and Mike Wyatt.
Wines were generously provided by Charles Krug; sparkling wine by Handley Cellars. Beer was provided by Sierra Nevada Brewery. Spirits were provided by Humboldt Distillery and Jewell Distillery. Auction sponsors included Backroads, Deetjen’s Big Sur Inn, Elk Meadow Cabin, Lazy Bear Restaurant,
Fire & Light, Nepenthe and the Post Ranch Inn. Corporate sponsors included Asset Management Company; Conservation Strategy Group; Dodge & Cox, Private Client Group; East Bay Regional Park District; Elk Meadow Cabins and Anthropocene Institute; Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria (lead corporate sponsor); GB Productions; Humboldt Lodging Alliance; MAG Management; Mendocino Humboldt Redwood Companies; and Sempervirens Fund.
Centennial Vision of Save the Redwoods League:
Save the Redwoods League envisions vibrant redwood forests of the scale and grandeur that once graced the California coast and Sierra Nevada, protected forever, restored to grow old again, and connected to people through a network of magnificent parks and protected areas that inspire all of us with the beauty and power of nature.
About Save the Redwoods League
Save the Redwoods League, one of the nation’s oldest conservation organizations, is celebrating 100 years of protecting and restoring coast redwood and giant sequoia forests and connecting generations of visitors with their peace and beauty. Its more than 20,000 supporters have enabled the League to protect more than 200,000 acres of irreplaceable forest and help create 66 redwood parks and reserves. For more information, visit SaveTheRedwoods.org.
About the League’s Education and Parks Support Programs
California’s state parks shelter 60 percent of the world’s remaining old-growth redwood forests, but they have also experienced declining funding over the past two decades despite an increased demand for services. The League’s Parks Support Program transforms visitor experiences through improved access and interpretation and protects the redwoods and other natural resources within the parks. The League’s Education Program connects new generations to redwood forests by providing free field trips and education materials, teaching students about the importance of redwoods and what we all can do to protect them. For more information about these programs visit: savetheredwoods.org/what-we-do.