Despite being scheduled the evening of the I-85 bridge collapse, Enduring Hearts’ Bourbon Gala and Auction was a great success.

Of the 300 guests registered to attend, 167 were able to make it to The Stave Room at American Spirit Works, even though some abandoned their vehicles and walked miles to get there. Guests included NFL football players Chris Conley of the Kansas City Chiefs, Tavarres King of the New York Giants and others. Guests were treated to performances by John Driskell Hopkins, a founding member of Zac Brown Band, and singer/songwriter Erin Alvey O’Sullivan. Through a live and silent auction and donor appeal, the event raised more than $85,000 for Enduring Hearts, a nonprofit aimed at funding research to increase the longevity of pediatric heart transplants and improve the quality of life for transplant recipients. Live auction items included rare and valuable bottles of bourbon from Pappy Van Winkle and a luxury vacation at a villa in Cabo San Lucas. More bottles of high-end whiskey were bid on through the silent auction along with six heart pendants made and donated by a child with a heart condition and NFL game-worn cleats with the Enduring Hearts logo.

Photos: Ninh Chau