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SanCap Cares breaks fundraising record

SANIBEL ISLAND, Fla. (April 10, 2014) – It was a million dollar plus evening at SanCap Cares at The Sanctuary Golf Club on Sanibel. The 14th Annual Island Celebration benefited Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida. The gala included cocktails, appetizers, a “give-to-give” auction of equipment that the hospital needs, dinner, and silent and live auctions.

The stunning auctioneer, Marty Harrity got everyone’s attention when appearing in a sparkling red dress on a piano as Michelle Pfeiffer from The Fabulous Baker Boys. The Sanibel Island councilman, Harrity, crooned, flirted and encouraged the crowd to new heights. By the end of the evening more than $1 million dollars was raised for the Children’s Hospital capital campaign.

Also assisting Harrity with the live auction were Melissa Congress as master of ceremonies and Jeannie Kendall and Holly Smith.

Generous bidders ended the evening with vacations to Mexico and across the U.S. (many donated by South Seas Island Resort), Congress Jewelers bling, spectacular dining experiences including an over-the-top dining experience at Sanibel’s Blue Coyote Supper Club and the ever-popular “Name That Drink” from Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille.

Caught up in the excitement, Jim Sprankle donated a second wildlife carving. Over the years, his renowned bird carvings have helped raise more than $200,000 for the new hospital.

Thanks to SanCap Cares co-chairs Amanda Cross, Dorothy Fitzgerald and Mike Mullins, and their dedicated committee, the hospital now has new specialized pediatric medical equipment and is closer to fulfilling their $10 million commitment to the hospital. Two anonymous donors generously contributed $200,000 for a Freddie the Fire Engine portable x-ray machine that will make hospital procedures less scary for children.

On hand to give his thanks was Jim Nathan, CEO of Lee Memorial Health System, “Sanibel and Captiva truly cares. For 14 years they have always exceeded their goal. This labor of love demonstrates that they are working to keep our sick children close to home.”

The new, larger facility will help accommodate the growing demand and will be better equipped to provide the care children need when they are critically ill. The children’s hospital, located adjacent to HealthPark, will provide 36 pediatric acute care beds, 12 pediatric hematology/oncology beds, 64 neonatal intensive care beds, 16 pediatric intensive care unit beds, 17 children’s emergency department beds, a diagnostic and MRI suite, the Ronald McDonald family room, an in-hospital classroom, play areas and more.

SanCap Cares has made a $10 million commitment to support the pediatric emergency department and is now more than halfway to that goal. The new emergency department will be larger with state-of-the-art technology designed especially for children and will be named after the Sanibel and Captiva communities.

In addition to the new facilities for children, there will be improvements at HealthPark benefiting adults, including four additional exam rooms in the emergency department, 48 more inpatient adult beds, new state-of-the-art equipment and expanded cardiac services.

For the 11th year, the Sanibel Captiva Trust Company served as master sponsor of the gala.

For additional information, contact Amanda Cross at 239-472-2082 or