Growing Dreams, the signature fundraising event for Maui Youth & Family Services (MYFS), returns this year after a one-year hiatus. This year's extravaganza--"Flora Couture: Where Floral and Fashion Collide!"--will be on Saturday, Aug. 17, at the Grand Wailea Resort & Spa Haleakala Ballroom in Wailea from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The event will feature Philadelphia florist Ron Mulray as the guest designer. In addition to a fabulous floral design show and luncheon, silent and live auctions will offer a variety of certificates and items.
Chairperson Teena Rasmussen, owner of Paradise Flower Farms on Maui, is happy to welcome Growing Dreams back to center stage.
Proceeds from the sales of local artist and philanthropist Leslie Granat’s “Live for Today” will go towards MYFS’ fundraising efforts.
"We are excited to bring this hugely popular, one-of-a-kind event back to Maui," Rasmussen said. "With some fresh ideas and a revitalized approach, we know that people will be delighted with this year's presentation."
Mulray will create ensembles on-stage made from "upcycles" and other surprise elements to highlight the avant-garde presentation. Themes will vary and include wedding ensembles to ultra-modern designs.
"The model's ensembles will be punctuated with beautiful floral pieces that will certainly delight the audience," said Rasmussen. "And for the first time, our donors will have the opportunity to sponsor one of these magnificent creations."
The committee is also looking for corporate sponsors and auction donations for the MYFS fundraising event.
"As fun and glamorous as Growing Dreams always is, we want to remember what it's all about," added Rasmussen. "Ultimately, the show helps MYFS provide crucial services to Maui's challenged and neglected children, such as emergency shelters, therapeutic foster care, mentoring and support."
An original watercolor entitled "Live for Today" by local artist and philanthropist Leslie Granat will be the symbolic image for this year's Growing Dreams. Granat, a longtime supporter of MYFS, feels her rendition of a red hibiscus flower, which only blooms for one day, "is a perfect memento, because when you are working with troubled youth, you have to remind them to take one day at a time so that they can be grateful for each day that they have."
Granat has been attending Growing Dreams since 2004 and calls it "the highlight of her social year" because it is "devoted to gorgeous flowers and floral arrangements and features an incredible presentation by a world-renowned florist, who teaches everything from how to set special holiday tables to how to repurpose rustic cans into beautiful vases."
A limited number of signed "Live for Today" prints will be available for purchase at the event. Also, individuals can purchase the print, an oil rendition on canvas or a framed copy of the watercolor through the MYFS Website (www.myfs.org), both before and after the luncheon.
Proceeds from the sales of "Live for Today" prints will go towards MYFS' fundraising efforts.
"We are deeply grateful to Leslie for giving everyone--even those who cannot attend--an opportunity to be a part of this exciting event and contribute to this worthy organization," said Rasmussen. "Her painting not only symbolizes the impact of our services on the community, but also raises much-needed funds so we can continue helping countless individuals and families in Maui County."
Tickets for Growing Dreams, which will now be held bi-annually, are $140 and $165 for VIP seating. Guests may purchase tickets at www.myfs.org ("Events" page).
Information about sponsorships, auction donations and placing advertisements in the event program is also available online.