Young Patronesses of the Opera to celebrate annual gala, Nov. 2

The Vegas Strip is coming to Brickell Avenue and the odds for a great time can’t be beat as Young Patronesses of the Opera (YPO) presents “Vegas Live,” its 58th annual gala on Nov. 2.

The city’s oldest and most established black-tie affair, the YPO Gala each year begins the Miami social season.

“Vegas Live” gets underway at 7 p.m. when the JW Marriott Hotel does a disappearing act becoming Caesars Palace for the evening, complete with Elvis impersonators, Vegas showgirls, and Rat Pack crooners.

Miami’s high rollers and starlets will join gala chair ladies; Patricia Mederos, Kimberly Criser, Leatrice Damus, Connie Danluck and Gretchen Kirtley for a fun-filled evening of dining, dancing and wagering at a silent auction with such exciting prizes as a luxurious chinchilla fur stole, valued at $1,800, to benefit YPO’s mission of furthering opera education in South Florida.

Also in the cards is a special tribute to past president and life member, Louise Todaro, who devoted 53 years of service to the organization, helping many of YPO’s education programs, especially the very successful In- School Opera Program.

“Every year, the YPO Gala is a mustattend social event which benefits an exceptional arts organization, and our 2013 Gala will truly be a night to remember,” said Patricia Mederos, president of YPO. “We are so grateful to this year’s gala sponsors without whom YPO would not be able to further its mission of opera education.”

Founded in l955, YPO is supported by a group of women who work without staff to advocate educational music programs and the Florida Grand Opera, the gala’s proceeds will fund music and opera educational programs, including a Girl Scout Workshop for more than 500 Girl Scouts and an annual teachers’ workshop which offers continuing education credits for 150 Miami-Dade and Broward County teachers on opera education in the classroom.

Each year YPO’s dedicated group of volunteers brings professional children’s opera performances to more than 25,000 elementary school students. They also fund a national voice competition that awards scholarships to gifted young opera singers.

For tickets or information about YPO and the 2013 “Vegas Live” Gala, visit or call 305-778-8791.

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