Roaring '20s theme jazzes up McCord B&W gala

Auctioneer George Mitchell fetched $6,000 for a golf and lunch package for six at the historic Beverly Country Club, the highest amount for live auction items at McCord Gallery and Cultural Center’s B&W fundraiser gala last Saturday night at Crystal Tree Country Club in Orland Park. It was donated by Joel Pelz.

The live auction capped off a swank evening of dinner, drinks, jazz music and dancing; many guests costumed to fit the theme of the Roaring ’20s and All That Jazz. A red 1929 Model-A Ford, arranged by board member Arlene Adams, greeted guests outside the doorway of the clubhouse, where the gala graced the grand ballroom upstairs.

A special recognition of Bill Opelka, who could not attend because he is in the final stages of cancer, for his many years of outstanding dedication to McCord was made before dinner by board member Patricia Martin. She and the evening’s program noted that Bill was McCord’s ambassador of goodwill to the Orland Park Area Chamber of Commerce and other service organizations. Dressing as Seely McCord, he brought history alive in his unique, entertaining way to Scout groups, schoolchildren and other youngsters visiting McCord, Mrs. Martin paid tribute to the man who delighted visitors with his humor, stories and magic tricks.