The Genesee-Orleans Ministry of Concern (GOMOC) is planning its first ever gala May 18 in an effort to cultivate new donors, spread awareness of the ministry and raise $25,000 to benefit its mission.
An anonymous donor has paid for Las Vegas-style entertainer Jimmy Mazz, who will provide an evening of music, impressions and comedy. Mazz is known for his clean humor, Frank Sinatra-style entertainment and engaging with his audience.
“Legends and Laughter” will take place at the Quality Inn and Suites at 8250 Park Road in Batavia. Included in the evening will be an elegant buffet dinner, silent auction, door prizes and basket raffle.
“If people have a really good time, they will remember you,” said Nyla Gaylord, executive director of GOMOC. “We are thrilled to have this anonymous couple who believe we do good work and wanted to help. They know Jimmy Mazz and wanted to sponsor him.”
The GOMOC was founded more than 50 years ago as a migrant ministry in Orleans County. Sister Marian Adrian was one of the first directors of the organization when they had an office in Batavia, and became passionate about its work.
It soon became known as the “Agency of Last Resort,” and during the years has helped hundreds of individuals in Genesee and Orleans counties who are down and out.
They now run operations from 121 N. Main St., Albion.
The committee planning the gala includes: Gaylord; Sister Dolores Dowd, who, like Sister Marian is a Grey Nun*; Mary Grace DeMarse, of Batavia, a member of GOMOC’s board; volunteer solicitor Kelly Murray, of Albion; Pat Morrisey, of Albion, who worked with Sister Marian 50 years ago; Judy Boyle, of Oakfield; and Amy Monti, of Middleport.
DeMarse said they plan to make the gala an annual fundraising event.
Several great prizes have already been donated for the silent auction, including a half-day fishing trip and hand-carved hunting knife.
Anyone wishing to donate a basket may call 589-9210 or 343-5452 and DeMarse will pick them up.
Tickets for the gala are $40 each or $300 for a table of eight. They are available at GOMOC’s office at 121 North Main St., Albion; Max Pies Furniture, 400 S. Jackson St., Batavia; and Catholic Charities, 5 Liberty St., Batavia.
(*The Grey Nuns is the name commonly given to six distinct Roman Catholic religious communities of women, which trace their origins to the original foundation, of the Sisters of Charity of the Hôpital Général, in Montréal, Canada. The foundation was founded in 1737 by Saint Marguerite d'Youville, a young widow.)