by Jan Spence –

As we stepped out of the chilly, misty weather into the HighPointe Estates, we were greeted by elegance all around. This brand-new venue was the perfect setting for our annual Wine, Women, Chocolate & Giving gathering— soaring vaulted ceilings drawing our eyes upward and reminding us that the sky’s the limit when women come together in a giving circle. The expansive space with its high ceilings also served as the perfect place to contain the otherwise unbounded energy of approximately 150 women who attended and enjoyed the impressive and tasty spread that Kim Broad, Linda Hansen and their Events Committee members put together for us.

After getting a name badge and signing up for the door prizes, we entered the Great Room. The tables of yummy morsels were a feast for the eyes as well as the palate. One of those tables featured a cascading chocolate fountain, just waiting for someone to nab a utensil and use it to submerge a marshmallow or pretzel into the chocolate. There also was a long table artfully arranged with all things chocolate, from brownies to chocolate-covered strawberries, to cookies, to cupcakes and much more. A perfect balance to the sweetness of the two desert tables, a third table offered a multi-level presentation of savory treats. Serving as a lovely compliment to all the goodies was, of course, liquid refreshment. Attendees enthusiastically filled their plates and found a place to relax and enjoy their bounty at numerous tables, all skillfully decorated, in the spacious room.

Judging from the cacophony of voices and laughter, everyone seemed to be thoroughly enjoying themselves as our Chair, Terri Boroczk, approached the microphone to begin her remarks. After warmly welcoming everyone – especially our guests, she recounted how far Seeds of Strength has come since its inception when only thirteen or so women gathered, pooled their money and gifted the first of many grants to a deserving non-profit in the Georgetown community. Some of those charter members celebrating women and giving that night were recognized: Eura Mae Gantt, Barbara Hallmark, Stephanie Blanck, Dora Aubin, Kathy Krause, Cindy Locke, Barbara Pearce, and Nancy Crouse. These extraordinary women, wise and visionary, saw a need, listened to their hearts, and took a leap of faith which launched us on our path. Because of these women and all those who have joined in the years since, SoS has thus far gifted a total of $1,328,000 to the non-profit organizations serving the Georgetown area. Terri invited our guests to join us in our philanthropic mission to enrich the lives of those around us. Capping the evening, names were drawn and three lucky women each went home with a door prize.

As the evening drew to a close, the delectable foods gone from the tables, friends began to gather coats from the backs of their chairs and say goodnight as they made their way back into the drizzling evening. Hopefully, seeds have been planted, watered with wine and friendship, so that others will join our giving circle, our effort to pay it forward.