Timbermill 'Winter Warmer' Charity Dinner for Cure Brain Cancer Foundation
On Friday 3rd July, we held a dinner in our warehouse in Marrickville in support of the ‘Cure Brain Cancer Foundation'. The ‘Timbermill Winter Warmer’ as it was known, was a sit -down dinner for 115 people. Guests were made up of our extended family and friend network. Choosing the ‘Cure Brain Cancer Foundation’ as our charity of the night was a personal one, as some members of our team have had their love ones affected by this illness in the past year.
Recently profiled in the media, in particular by Carrie Bickmore at the Australian ‘Logie’ Awards it is a cancer where survival rates are not changing, and only two in ten people diagnosed with brain cancer will survive for at least five years (*2). We figured even if we could do a little bit to help it would be worth it, and all in support of a great charity.
““On average, approximately 1600 brain cancers are diagnosed each year in Australia; that is roughly one person diagnosed with brain cancer every five hours.” (*1)”
For the event, after holding a smaller version last year (see recap here) this year we decided to up that figure to 100 tickets. Although, in the end the final guest count was 115 (WOW!) due to the overwhelming support from our guests as they bought tickets faster than we could turn them down. Every single ticket sold out within 6 days. Incredible.
Below is a detailed recap of the night in question, although a huge thanks must go out to all our sponsors. Without them, this event could not happen. Simple as that. Their extreme generosity, whether it be via physical donations, discounts or donating their time for setup. It has not gone un-noticed and we hope we can repay the favour someday. An extra huge thanks goes to Gallivant Events, Huntington Estate Winery and Sophie Thompson for their involvement.
Read on to see where everyone contributed..
After deciding to hold this event, we set about finding a caterer to host it with. Having met Tim from Gallivant a few months into starting Timbermill way back in 2012, he was our natural first choice. Often talking about how we could find opportunities to work with the Gallivant team, this seemed like the perfect event. When he said yes, it’s safe to say we were all pretty ecstatic here in the office.
Tim and his team worked tirelessly helping us find sponsors, organise suppliers, design menus and then on the day of the event his team spent the day in our kitchen preparing the meal. The menu for the night was definitely a ‘winter warmer’; consisting of Slow roasted pork, mixed roasted vegetables, luscious salads and fresh bread. And all topped off with chocolate tart and poached pears.. safe to say no one went hungry. A big thank you goes to his suppliers Class Occasions, Feather and Bone Providore, Murdoch Produce, Worm Ticklers, and Iggy’s Bread for all their amazing help.
Lately, we have been working with Sophie Thompson from What to Cook on a few projects (see a recent one here). Seeing as her specialty is food and lifestyle photography we thought she would be the perfect fit as photographer for this event. And as you can see by the absolutely stunning imagery above, she went above and beyond for the night. Arriving a little early to capture the behind the scenes magic of Tim and his team in the kitchen, she then spent the night photographing whilst we all enjoyed ourselves. Her images have beautifully captured the detail, mood and ambience of the event.
Some of our personal favourites are the ones where she captured the excitement of our raffle winners, the kitchen shots which show the intensity in the eyes of the Gallivant team whilst they finished their preparations, and the up close table setting shots which display the ambience of the candle light. A huge thank you to Soph for donating her time and skill to us.
An overwhelming donation was made by Huntington Estate Winery in Mudgee who generously donated all the wine for the evening, amazing! Guests began the night with a glass of sparkling, and then enjoyed both their select red and white wines which were poured by the wait staff from Black and White Waiters who never let a glass go empty. Ample supply of beer and sparkling water was also provided for guests.
Music And Speaker Hire
One of our team Brendan is a part time DJ so he took the reigns on the music side of things, having a little more knowledge than the rest of us. He arranged for the team at Buzz Speaker Hire Sydney to loan us the AV equipment. They made the setup look simple, and the AV for the night went off without a hitch. After some light music to begin the night, Brendan took over the DJ booth at around 9pm for a bit of dance floor action.
Being a bespoke furniture hire company, this event gave us a chance to use our own product. Creating one large 30m table made up from 14 ‘dining’ trestles (RENT THEM HERE) we threaded the table through the middle of the warehouse. Wanting to sit maximum people, our ‘long johnny’ benches (RENT THEM HERE) were the perfect shared seating option. Each table had 8-10 people sitting around it - which whilst it was a little tight in places, it tied in with the overall theme of the night which was ultimately about bringing people together for a large communal dinner.
We are lucky enough to have a resident florist in our Rental Account Manager Alanna. Seeing as we were on a limited budget, she worked with florals which were low cost. Our friends at Azz Plumbing very generously donated enough copper pipe for Tom to make up 16 vases which we filled with magnolia foliage. We were also generously loaned some large magnolia trees from Honeysuckle Nursery which surrounded the perimeters of the space to cover up some of the more workshop elements. The copper and dark foliage worked so well together, and really enhanced the ‘winter warmer’ feel.
The ‘Winter Warmer’ logo was something we hand-drew in-house and then created as a logo style graphic which was then featured on all branding for the night. Eilieen & Marie from Lil’ Sweets handmade each guest a box of chocolate featuring dark chocolate with rosewater meringue & rose petals, white chocolate with coconut and cranberries, and milk chocolate with crushed oreos. It was then tied up with a custom plywood tag for guests to take home with them.
All tickets were pre-sold to the event as we wanted a confirmed number of attendees, and then we decided to hold a raffle on the night to raise a bit of extra money for the charity.
Setting up the raffle a little differently, by selling ticket books of five and then having individual bags for the prizes so guests could enter multiple prizes or if you were after one in particular then put all your tickets in the one. Selling the tickets in the intermission between the main meal and desert meant the mood was high, and people were feeling joyful and wanting to get involved.
Our prizes were generously donated by Thredbo Resorts, Hanako Floral Designs, Wildlife Hair, Huntington Estate Wines and Timbermill raffled off one of our 'Benefield' Dining Tables.
Overall, it was a fabulous night and whilst we are still in the process of doing the final tally it looks like we have raised around $5.5K for the ‘Cure Brain Cancer Foundation’.
I am so overwhelmed by the generosity of our sponsors, suppliers, and most importantly the guests who attended the event. I hope you had as much fun as we all did.
If you want to know more about the ‘Cure Brain Cancer Foundation’ visit their website here.
Until the next time - Sal, Tom & The Timbermill Team X
ALL IMAGES COPYRIGHT TO TIMBERMILL & SOPHIE THOMPSON
*Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2015. ACIM (Australian Cancer Incidence and Mortality) Books. AIHW: Canberra. Five year average incidence figure (2007 – 2011). Source link