Anticipation grows for night of nights

AS the preparations hot up for this year's Press Ball the organisers today revealed some of the magnificent prizes and auction lots up for grabs at the prestigious event.

AS the preparations hot up for this year's Press Ball the organisers today revealed some of the magnificent prizes and auction lots up for grabs at the prestigious event.

As 270 guests arrive to a red carpet pre-ball reception, a team of fairies will be on hand to encourage revellers to dig deep for charity.

Bridget York, creative director of event management firm Entire Affair, said plans include a marquee filled with an enchanted forest and a jazz band, which will greet guests as they arrive at the ball.

She added: "In keeping with this year's theme 'An Enchanted Evening', fairies and tress will provide the backdrop for the pre-ball Pimms reception."

As revealed last week in The Evening Star, the glittering ball, to be held at hotel Elizabeth in Copdock on June 24, is sold out.

Raising thousands for the event's chosen charity - Disability Care Enterprise (DCE) - the ninth annual Ipswich and Suffolk Press Ball is promising to be one of the best ever.

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Now established as the county's 'night of the year', the Press Ball is a sparkling evening of sophisticated entertainment attended by the leaders of Suffolk's social and business community.

Ms York said an 'enchanted tree' would be dripping with fabulous raffle prizes.

She said: "I am really excited. We have some brilliant raffle prizes and auction lots. Manchester United have signed a football, we have a pampering weekend for two at Champneys, in Tring, and a Malaysian meal for six cooked in your own home."

A white gold diamond bracelet, a family portrait by Ipswich-based Bailey Photography and a Grand Prix carting experience at Buckmore Park, in Kent, will also be auctioned during the evening.

Raffle prizes include champagne, restaurant vouchers, DVD players, and London Eye tickets.

Ms York thanked those who had donated goods and services to the event.

Sponsored by Ipswich firm Call Connection, the Press Ball is popular among the county's business community.

Call Connection managing director Graeme Kalbraier said he is looking forward to the evening.

He added: "The Press Ball never fails to impress and I am delighted to be involved with such a good cause. I expect I shall be putting my hand up for some of those tremendous items."

Star editor Nigel Pickover said: "The generosity of those donating to the auction and raffle is to be commended. Thank you all for helping make what promises to be a magnificent night for guests as well as DCE."

N Would you like to donate a raffle prize or lot for the auction? If so call Ms York on 0208 4297530.

SINCE its start in 1997 the press ball has raised thousands for charity.

A glittering event, the ball is now the highlight of the county's social and business calendar and with the fabulous theme 'An Enchanted Evening' this year's ball will be another night to remember.

Top magician and international entertainer Paul Daniels is this year's special guest and a stunning enchanted forest will greet guests as they step on to the red carpet.

Music, dancing, food and wine will be followed by an auction and tombola, with prizes donated by a number of businesses and organisations.

The event, which is to be held at the Hotel Elizabeth, Copdock, on June 24, raises thousands for Disability Care Enterprise (DCE) - a charity which provides specialist equipment for disabled people across the county.

Carolyne Morey, DCE project director, said: "The press ball is our major fundraising event of the year. Last year it raised about £31,000 which took the total to more than £190,000."

Graeme Kalbraier, managing director of press ball sponsors Call Connection, said: "Every penny raised is used for the benefit of the children, young people and adults that need the help of the DCE. I am delighted to be involved with this year's ball and I am proud that Call Connection is sponsoring it."

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