“An Evening with the Stars” Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association Gala Dinner Extravaganza
March 24, 2005
Pembroke Pines, FL. – (March 24, 2005). The Member Lines of the Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) celebrated yet another successful Gala Dinner and Entertainment Extravaganza, their 11th Annual fund-raiser benefiting the FCCA Foundation for the Caribbean. This year’s event—held on its new night, Wednesday, March 16, 2005—saw approximately $200,000 raised for the Foundation, with almost 600 cruise industry partners and top cruise executives spending the evening networking and socializing in a lively business/casual atmosphere.
The Gala took place during the week of the Seatrade Cruise Shipping Convention, and was sponsored by the Port of Miami and the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau. Park West Gallery sponsored a silent art auction, donating over 100 pieces of remarkable artwork by world-renowned artists such as Salvador Dali, Thomas Kinkade, Jean-Claude Picot and a host of other talents. In addition to the art available for auction, Carnival Corporation donated official Shaquille O’Neil and Dwayne Wade player jerseys and an official Miami Heat Team Basketball signed by the Heat players. Other auction items include cruises donated by MSC Cruises (USA) Inc. and Radisson Seven Seas Cruises, the FCCA’s two newest Member Lines; along with a 6.0L bottle of 1995 Ornellaia Wine contributed by Robert Dickinson, President & CEO of Carnival Cruise Line.
At the conclusion of the silent auction, guests were escorted to center court at the American Airlines Arena, which was transformed into an elegant dining atmosphere. The FCCA’s Chairman, Micky Arison, Carnival Corporation’s Chairman and CEO, gave the opening remarks and thanked guests for their attendance. He expressed his sincere gratitude to all industry partners in attendance for their continued support of this worthy cause. “The funds raised here tonight will enable the FCCA Foundation for the Caribbean to help needy organizations throughout the Caribbean.” Recognition was also given to additional event sponsors: Port Everglades, Eller and Company Inc., and SYSCO Food Services of South Florida.
FCCA President Michele M. Paige recognized Stephen A. Nielsen, VP Caribbean and Atlantic Shore Operations, Princess Cruises for his two-year tenure as the FCCA’s Operations Committee chairman. “It is customary for the FCCA to acknowledge the outgoing Chairman of the Operations Committee at the Gala Dinner. I was deeply honored that the staff of the FCCA selected my wife to make that acknowledgment before so many of my colleagues and associates. It was, for me, one of my proudest moments. The recognition by the staff of FCCA of Dorine's support and contributions to my success is deeply gratifying,” said Mr. Nielsen.
In addition, the first place winners of the FCCA Foundation’s 2005 Environmental Poster Competition were on hand to share in the celebration. Julius Tinker (senior division) from the Bahamas and Ifeanyichukwu Otuonye (junior division) from Turks & Caicos both expressed their gratitude as they accepted their scholarship awards of $2,500 each.
The FCCA Foundation for the Caribbean serves as a tangible vehicle for the cruise industry to actively participate in the effort to improve the lives of needy individuals in the Region through its funding of humanitarian and social causes. In its twelve years of existence, the Foundation has benefited thousands of citizens, providing more than $2 million in funding to worthy causes and charities throughout the greater Caribbean Region.
Special thanks to all attendees for making this year’s “Evening with the Stars” such a great success and for your continued support, ensuring the FCCA Foundation continues to be a positive force in the Caribbean community.
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The FCCA is a not-for-profit trade organization composed of 18 Member Lines operating nearly 200 vessels in Floridian, Caribbean and Latin American waters. Created in 1972, the FCCA’s mandate is to provide a forum for discussion on tourism development, ports, safety, security, and other cruise industry issue and to develop bilateral relationships with destinations’ private and public sectors. By fostering an understanding of the cruise industry and its operating practices, the FCCA works with governments, ports and private sector representatives to maximize cruise passenger, crew and cruise line spending, as well as enhance the destination experience and increase the amount of cruise passengers returning as stay-over visitors. For more information, visit F-CCA.com, the FCCA on Facebook, and @FCCAupdates on Twitter.