Puttin’ on the Ritz 2019

Community organizations gathered last year for the annual Puttin’ on the Ritz fundraiser. Pictured, from left to right at the Zions Bank table, are Mikala Lawley, Amber O’Donnal, Sarah Wojcieszak, Morgi Croasmun, Sheree Maughan, Andrea Noyes, Chantell Noyes and Kenna Crump. This year’s event is on Feb. 8. [Photo by Murice D. Miller / Moab Sun News]

“We’re getting down to crunch time now,” said Abigail Taylor, deputy executive director for Seekhaven Family Crisis and Resource Center. 

Preparations for Puttin’ on the Ritz, Seekhaven’s annual fundraising gala, last for months and range from planning the menu to organizing the music.

Seekhaven was founded in 1990 to assist survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in Grand County and throughout southeastern Utah. The Moab-based nonprofit provides people with emergency shelter, transition assistance and advocacy services. Donations and support from the local community at the gala help fund these services year-round.

“This year, Puttin’ on the Ritz will feel even more special,” Taylor said. “The Fiery Furnace Marching Band will welcome people as they arrive, to get the energy up, and we have some wonderful items in our silent auction.”

“We have some very loyal donors and artists in the community, and every year we look forward to highlighting the local talent,” she said, referring to the many donations that come from Moab Made (a local artisan gift shop) artists.

The last month before the event can feel rushed for Seekhaven staff, who do the planning on top of all their services, said Taylor, mentioning that this year Hoodoo Moab has also taken on much of the event’s organization.

“It’s a huge help,” she said.

The annual event will be held at Hoodoo Moab for the first time this year, after many years at the Grand Center. Food for the event will be provided by Josie Wyatt’s Grille, which is within Hoodoo Moab.

“Guests will be invited to sit down with their dinner, while our Executive Director Maddie Fisk and Alison Ling, the president of our board of directors, will give short speeches about this year’s work. We’ll also be giving out awards in honor of some sponsor’s generosity,” said Taylor.

“And at the end, there’ll be dancing!” she added, noting that local DJ CozySoul will be providing music throughout the evening.

Tickets for the annual gala sell out early every year, Taylor cautioned, and though the event is weeks away there are only a few spaces left. General admission is $60; tickets may be purchased online at www.seekhaven.org.

Seekhaven’s 2019 community benefit report, which contains data and reports on the important services the nonprofit provides, is being released soon and will be posted on their website.

If you are in need of shelter or advocacy services, call Seekhaven’s 24-hour hotline at 435-259-2229.