Even though Ohio was still enduring relentlessly cold winter weather, those who attended the California Dreamin’ beach party at Weymouth Country Club March 22, could pretend for a few hours they were walking the warm sandy coast and listening to the waves of the Pacific Ocean.

Supporters gathered for the 2014 Raising the Roof Dinner and Entertainment Charity Benefit for Medina Creative Housing, the eighth annual fundraising event that helps individuals with disabilities achieve their dreams and reach their potential.

The evening began with a one-hour VIP Wine Reception, to thank sponsors at the $500 level and higher.

The setting was pure California, and most party-goers dressed for the occasion. They listened to Phil Dirt and the Dozers pay tribute to the Beach Boys, and bid on almost 100 silent auction baskets. They purchased raffle tickets for a Samsung Tablet donated by Nancy and John Zalick, and many won prizes at the surfboard, beach ball and candy games. All enjoyed the MCH Dreamin’ skit performed by the resident’s acting group, “Creative Comedy Crew.”

Auctioneer Bob Hale offered five amazing live auction packages that included Florida condo vacations donated by Elaine Orlandi and Sandra and Patrick Vandendriessche, a catered dinner party for 20 from Sue and Gary Quesada, a private party at the Cleveland Air Show from a friend, and a chance to throw out the first pitch at an Indians game, from The Cleveland Indians.

Five food stations “Farmer’s Market, From the Pier, California Cuisine, MCH In and Out Burgers, and West Coast Sweets” provided casual dining and were open a good portion of the evening. The surf-side style dishes were prepared by Weymouth Country Club. Every table had a surfboard, sun umbrella and sand pail centerpiece created by Judy Daugherty, Diane Isaac, Mary Colbow and Kris Thomas.

MCH Property Manager and Supervisor Scott Ernshaw, a lifeguard from the Medina Rec Center, brought along James Friedl, Eve Schodowski, Maggie Everett and Caleb Ernshaw as lifeguards for the event.

Later in the evening Paige and Hannah Smith were presented with the Volunteers of the Year Award. Also, “Ms. Santa Monica” and “Mr. Venice Beach” were chosen. The lucky winners were Sharon and Tom Borror.

MCH Board President Dr. Michael Carlson shared the news that MCH Executive Director Dianne DePasquale-Hagerty will receive the 2014 “Community Innovator Award” from the Milestones Autism Organization at their national conference June 18. The award recognizes a leader who has been a trailblazer in the special needs areas and created opportunities that have not previously existed. On June 19, DePasquale-Hagerty will be the featured speaker at the Cleveland Power Players Luncheon.

Click HERE to read the full story by Angela Huston from MedinaCountyLife.com.

Click HERE to download the event program.