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MICA Annual Gala


This year's event generously supported by the following corporate supporters
. . . click here for more details

14th Annual Gala Dinner and Auction - November 10, 2016

A beautiful fall evening greeted the guests of the 14th Annual MICA Gala Dinner and Auction (GDA) on November 10, 2016 at the Atlantica Oak Island Resort, which appropriately overlooks Mahone Bay. Once again, this was a sold out event.

MICA supporters, arriving around 6:30 pm, explored the treasures on display in the silent auction and live auction rooms and greeted friends, while being entertained by the cheerful music of Dr. Laurie McNeil.

Bagpiper Jim Parker led the group to the dining room for the welcome by MC and Founding Chair Michael Ernst. Michael asked local MLA Suzanne Lohnes-Croft to lead us in Oh Canada. Michael then thanked the organizing committee and the many people who helped and supported the event and gave instructions for the evening.

A tasty dinner was served by the Oak Island staff.

Michael introduced MICA Chair John Meisner. John welcomed the special guests, recognized and thanked the GDA Committee Chair Georg Ernst and the artists and donors. He explained that funds collected at the event go to support island acquisitions for conservation and for traditional public use and reported that to date over $1.2 million has been raised and that 15 Mahone Bay islands or parts thereof have been brought back into public ownership for conservation and traditional public use.

He also recognized the MICA Corporate Supporters, displayed on the table centrepieces and on the projection screen. He pointed out that most were long time MICA supporters and specifically noted the new Corporate Supporters for this year.

The audience was very attentive when a number of announcements were made that detailed some very exciting donations and a planned partnered acquisition project as follows:

a. Zwicker Island properties:
Two separate properties on Zwicker Island from the Cluett and Court families are currently in the process of being donated to MICA. The one property is on the western side and about 30,000 sq ft. The other is on the northern side and about 40,000 sq. ft. On finalization of the formalities, both will be very nice properties to be included in the MICA group of island properties. Announcements will be made in the near future which will include more details when all the documentation is complete.

MICA offers our sincere thanks to the Cluett and Court family for these generous donations.

b. Ernst Island property:
A very significant portion of Ernst Island (essentially the northern half), approximately 22 acres is currently in the process of being donated to MICA. On finalization of the formalities, this will be a very nice property to be included in the MICA group of island properties. Announcements will be made in the near future which will include more details when all the documentation is complete.

MICA offers our sincere thanks to the Reynolds family for this generous donation.

Announcement of the above donations drew a significant applause and cheers from the crowd.

c. Chester Islands:
John described how MICA had been recently approached by the Nature Conservancy of Canada asking for support in an acquisition project in the Chester area and as follows:
  • MICA is very pleased to partner with Nature Conservancy of Canada to secure the permanent protection of Quaker, Snake and Lynch Islands with the shared goal of bringing them into permanent conservation and availability for continued public use and enjoyment.
  • MICA will make a financial contribution of $100,000 to the NCC-led acquisition and will also partner with NCC to ensure the appropriate stewardship and management of the islands.
John explained this is a very exciting project for us (MICA) and of course is subject to acceptable formalization of all documentation and agreements. These are three very significant islands in Mahone Bay and MICA is very pleased to be working with NCC and very pleased that these islands will be conserved and available for traditional public use.

Announcement of the above project again drew a very significant applause and cheers from the crowd.

The announcements provided a very good lead up to the live auction but first GDA Chair Georg Ernst thanked his committee. He said the committee is motivated by success and encouraged everyone to enthusiastically participate in the auction.

The auction then began with auctioneer Paul Rogers, supported by Michael Ernst and MICA spotters and helpers, auctioned the wide variety of 26 items which ranged from wonderful paintings, metal sculptures, deep sea fishing trip, live band, wooden carvings and other very interesting items.

The final auction item, traditional for the event, was a whimsical brightly coloured wooden fish made by long time GDA supporter Gary Longard. This item drew some enthusiastic bidding and was a fitting way to end the evening.

All in all, this was another very successful GDA raising approximately $64,000 (including proceeds from a boat sale earlier in the year). The energy and excitement at the event was so encouraging that the committee is already thinking ahead to 2017!

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Updated September 28, 2022
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