One Enchanted Evening

By Richard Mineards   |   September 6, 2022
Nick Katzenstein, Zoofari Ball XXXVI Honorary Chairs Jess and Robyn Parker, and Tyler Powell (photo by Nik Blaskovich)
Peter and Pieter Crawford-van Meeuwen (photo by Nik Blaskovich)

The party animals were out in force when Santa Barbara Zoo held its 36th annual sold-out Zoofari gala with an Enchanted Forest theme, with the 712 guests taking the theme to heart with colorful, creative costumes more befitting Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings, and the Harry Potter novels as they converged on the 30-acre menagerie, which houses 600 animals, raising $600,000.

The super summer soirée, chaired by Jess and Robyn Parker with event coordinators Lisa Carter-Alford and Sam Franz, was creatively decorated with fairy tale mushrooms and many of the zoo’s staff sporting butterfly wings, as the signature cocktail, The Monarch, consisting of vodka-infused cantaloupe balls, was served to the merry throng.

The bash’s raffle included a $18,000 polar bear expedition for two to Alaska, while the silent auction boasted a VIP trip for four to see local warbler Katy Perry in her Las Vegas residency, a five-night stay in Kauai, a seven-night vacation in Aspen, Colorado, and a two-night stay at the Rosewood Miramar.

Among those noshing on the Rincon Events catered carrot walnut soufflé, cedar plank salmon, and braised short ribs, accompanied with wine donated by Fred Brander, were Anne Towbes, Luke Swetland, Janet Garufis, former mayor Helene Schneider, Rich Block, Chris and Mindy Denson, George and Laurie Leis, Hiroko Benko, Ginni Dreier, Chuck and Margarita Lande, David Bolton, Tom Parker, Adam McKaig, Nancy McToldridge, Thomas Rollerson, Arlene Larsen, Rick Oshay, and Teresa Kuskey Nowak.


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