When I was seven years old my parents took me to my first opera in Philadelphia where I grew up. Since that night the performing arts have had a very special place in my heart. When I moved to Florida in 1979, I missed the joy and delight of seeing premier ballet companies, the Metropolitan Opera, and hearing internationally acclaimed orchestras perform in a world-class facility. The trek to the “leaky tee-pee” was far from ideal and it was heartbreaking to watch artists perform in much less than perfect conditions.
In the mid-‘80s, when I first heard of the possibility there would be a major performing arts center built in Palm Beach County, I immediately began to support the fund raising efforts as a volunteer on the “Cocktails for Culture” Committee. I hosted a party at my Frenchmen’s Creek home and encouraged all my neighbors to support the Center by making a donation to the “buy a seat” campaign. We raised enough money to fund a row of seats! Yes, the planning and building of the Kravis Center were exciting times and it was an honor to be a member of the Building Campaign Advisory Board. We all worked hard to introduce new donors to the Center’s mission, and we all did our part to turn a dream into the reality it is today – a world-class performing arts center!
Looking to the future, we need to ensure the Center will remain a cultural icon in Palm Beach County forever. Because I care deeply about the Center’s community outreach efforts to engage new young audience members, I made the decision to support the Center with a current gift to the Permanently Restricted Endowment Fund. It is so heartwarming to me to know the work we are now doing to enlarge the endowment will provide income to help the Center continue to carry on its mission bringing joy and happiness to the youth of today who are the audiences of tomorrow.
Rita E. Stein
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