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Black and White Ball returns with a bang

Original post made on Jul 30, 2019

After a seven-year hiatus, the Black and White Ball is back. First held in 1987 as the key fundraising event for the Palo Alto Recreation Foundation, this year's ball will be held on Friday, Oct. 4.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, July 30, 2019, 9:25 AM

Comments (21)

15 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 30, 2019 at 6:09 pm

Mark Weiss is a registered user.

Your headline is in truly bad taste please change it


8 people like this
Posted by Staying Young Through Kids
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jul 30, 2019 at 6:45 pm

Staying Young Through Kids is a registered user.

$150 a ticket? While I appreciate the fundraising nature of this "community" event, I wonder which demographics within our community can afford this evening on the town?


14 people like this
Posted by zap
a resident of another community
on Jul 30, 2019 at 11:27 pm

" I wonder which demographics within our community can afford this evening on the town? "

Is there a demographic that attends black tie charity events but can't afford $150?


Like this comment
Posted by Sophie
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 31, 2019 at 4:36 am

@ Mark Weiss, haha, you nailed it


4 people like this
Posted by HailHillary
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 31, 2019 at 8:11 am

[Post removed.]


9 people like this
Posted by Tim
a resident of another community
on Jul 31, 2019 at 9:55 am

$150 per ticket. Only for the rich.


2 people like this
Posted by Mark Weiss
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 31, 2019 at 10:23 am

Mark Weiss is a registered user.

No seriousy I have produced more than 200 events in Palo Alto over the last 25 years and nowadays security is no laughing matter.
My events are dry events -- at community spaces, with no bar, no alcohol -- so they are rarely any trouble, compared to the Edge or something with bouncers who practically challenge other jar-heads.
The Black and White Ball has alcohol -- I know because I bought the bottomless cup enhancement -- but should not be trouble -- the price does keep out a lot of the street element. (That plus, um, Mustache Harbor??)

The headline is in bad taste because it references the recent gun violence at another civic event.

( I worked in newspapers, here and back east, so I am sensative to this: I remember our editor throwing a fit once because a headline about a crime case testimony said that a witness "...Fingers Colon..." Anatomically impossible but that's where his mind went. "Fingers" in this case meaning "points to", "blames"; whereas Colon was the name of another alleged perp).

Hopefully the ball will be a blast in only a literal sense. Or, the ball "rolls" but hardly rocks.

Drinking and dancing as civic duty -- actually the latter part is sort of my business plan, as Earthwise Productions (not a consultant to the event, although I had done so in the past).


2 people like this
Posted by zap
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 31, 2019 at 1:01 pm

I don't see this any different than the walk/run type events that will have NOTHING to do with you unless you get pledges off other people of at least $400 or $500 or whatever.

Why not let people support the cause and just put in your own $20 or $50? Is there a dearth of people in the office hitting others up for money? Is it really that expensive to give someone a tshirt and water bottle without them bringing several hundred dollars to the cause?


31 people like this
Posted by Strictly A Baby Boomer Mentality Affair
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Jul 31, 2019 at 1:59 pm

The Black & White Ball is a showcase for pseudo high-society wannabes...photo-ops, opportunity for people to dress up in their designer clothes & jewelry, make trivial small-talk while holding their wine glasses etc.

Or as Jerry Seinfeld would say, "Not that there's anything wrong with that."

It's a generational thing. In the future these kinds of fund-raising events will be far less showy & pretentious.

Valet parking & an opportunity to be seen exiting a pricey automobile? OK...whatever floats your boat as Uber/Lyft might cut down on some potential DUIs following the event.

To 'See & Be Seen' is a more apt name for this event & at $150.00 a pop, why not...if you are into this kind of thing.

Excellent networking opportunity for RE agents & those new to the PA neighborhood exploring assimilation measures & alternative techniques.


6 people like this
Posted by Drake
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Jul 31, 2019 at 5:04 pm

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by zap
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 3, 2019 at 2:15 am

How soon people forget... There used to be restaurants like Evvia participating. I'm not so sure people will get the same bang for the buck this year, but they don't want to seem like the event has gotten "cheap." So (apparently) they've kept the ticket prices up.

To say it's only for "rich people" supposes that there are those who aren't "rich" that have a habit of spending $100+ for a la carte dinner (without wine...) for two.


Like this comment
Posted by AlexDeLarge
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 7, 2019 at 10:27 am


Well, it's a charity event, a fundraiser. Please feel free to donate, or not...


Like this comment
Posted by Bring a date
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 7, 2019 at 2:40 pm

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 7, 2019 at 8:07 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Marc - noted your comment on Mustache Harbor. Great Band. Will be at Redwood Cities Music on the Square Friday August 9 - 6:00 to 8:00 PM. That is an event every Friday night in the summer that is FREE. If you all have not been up there then GO - and have dinner either before or after at one of the great eating spots.
Also please note all of the tasteful new buildings along the Caltrain corridor. See - they put new buildings downtown and leave the residential homes alone - which are rising in price. I am sure that they have exceeded their "requirement" from the state for new housing. All very well done.


5 people like this
Posted by Photo-Op
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Aug 8, 2019 at 4:39 pm

The Black & White Ball is like a high school prom for the older generations (except that they serve alcohol on the premises).

the women get to wear cocktail dresses (or designer evening gowns) & the menfolk sport tuxedos. It's also an opportunity to showcase their jewelry & wristwatches.

The BW Ball is a throwback to another era like country club debutante balls and it's essentially a second (or third) tier gathering trying to establish its place among opening night at the SF Opera.

As another poster said...strictly a generational mentality & an opportunity to showcase (and further expose) one's narcissism and/r superficiality...like at a 10 year high school reunion.

Some people have never outgrown (or moved past) their high school universe.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Aug 9, 2019 at 12:43 am

Can't really blame people for their attitude. It is innate.


1 person likes this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Aug 9, 2019 at 8:16 am

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

If you all get a major paper then you will note all of the charity balls that people attend in the cities to support major causes. They get their names in the papers and pictures with notables. The Pelosi's turn up when she is in town as well as the Schultze's. All of the great fun they have which incorporates their children as they arrive at adult hood so you then can watch the children with mom and dad. You mean you are not following the opening of the SF Opera? Or a charity event for UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital? The people who cater and clothes these events would be sorely disappointed. They also like to get their names in the papers.
Willie Brown of the SF Chronicle, former SF Mayor and CA assembly person let's you know on a weekly basis his goings on at the famous and wealthy parties in SF. At least someone in SF is having a great time.


9 people like this
Posted by Not Worth Saving
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 9, 2019 at 1:19 pm

Some people are inherent social climbers & an event such as this is like a masquerade ball where they can pretend to be someone (or something) they are not in real life.

$150.00 admission fee is the gateway for an evening of delusions.

West Coast 'high society' is an oxymoron anyway...it simply does not exist.

Eastern 'blue bloods' enjoy mocking the routes some people will go through for a 'touch of class'.

BTW...money doesn't buy class. Just ask Jay Gatsby.


8 people like this
Posted by Social Stratification 101
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 10, 2019 at 5:52 pm

> BTW...money doesn't buy class.

Many of the true eastern 'bluebloods' (even though they may not be as wealthy) scoff at the midwestern manufacturing 'rich folks' who also tried to buy class during the late 1800s & early 20th century. There is no 'high society' in Chicago either.

Bloodlines matter...i.e. old Dutch, English & Huguenot (French). Wealthy mobsters, Irish bootleggers, professional athletes, Hollywood entertainers, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs et al may have more money but they are not cut from the same cloth.

> Just ask Jay Gatsby.

^^^ He threw elaborate parties too but was never truly accepted by the upper crust. Boo-hoo wannabes.


Like this comment
Posted by JapaneseMaple
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 29, 2019 at 6:35 pm

I don’t quite understand why the comments here are so negative. I support raising money for local journalism and why shouldn’t the “Haves” within the community contribute? It makes sense to me that at least one of their annual fundraising events seeks to attract higher-spending donors. The paper was at the free community PA Art Fair last week with staff giving up their time and volunteering all day at the booth. The paper is free for all, the website is free for all, this comment thread is also a free for all. Why all the animosity?


2 people like this
Posted by High Society In Palo Alto
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Aug 29, 2019 at 6:53 pm

Marisa Meyer should sponsor the B&W at her new mortuary and spring for all of the food, drinks & entertainment with the proceeds going to whom ever they're supposed to.

Except for the parking issue, this would really endear her to the neighborhood & make Ms. Meyer the grand dame of high-end Palo Alto community fundraising events.

High society in Palo Alto...is that a realistic envision?


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