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IAEC-NY Dinner Cruise Celebrates 20 Years

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The International Association of Elevator Consultants New York Region (IAEC-NY) benefit cruise saw clear skies, calm seas and gentle breezes.

Though rain prevailed earlier in the day, the 20th annual International Association of Elevator Consultants New York Region (IAEC-NY) dinner cruise sailed amid clear skies, calm seas and gentle breezes on August 22. A large and enthusiastic crowd of approximately 375 boarded the World Yacht Princess, docked at Pier 81 on West 41st Street. Welcomed with much fanfare, white wine and champagne as they ascended the ship, attendees also were given US$100 vouchers to be traded in later for gaming chips to use in the makeshift casino on board.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation’s (EESF) largest fundraising event, organizers of the IAEC-NY dinner cruise made some special changes this year. One popular addition was the casino upstairs, another was early boarding between 5:30 and 7 p.m. (during which time hors d’oeuvres could be enjoyed on board), and the third was a raffle for special prizes at the end of the evening.

As the ship set sail on the Hudson River for the 3-hr. tour around lower Manhattan, a buffet-style dinner was served, and drinks and conversation flowed as the gaming began. Experienced players bet alongside novices, and the atmosphere was amicably competitive. All casino winnings were doled out in raffle tickets to be used later when the much-sought-after prizes, including such fare as golf clubs, TVs and iPad Minis, were raffled. Eventually, a crowd also gathered on the lower level’s dance floor thanks to the popular music provided by the evening’s DJ. The crowd outside rivaled that inside the ship. The deck was full of attendees enjoying the evening’s fine weather, while catching up with colleagues and friends, all against a backdrop of some of the city’s most iconic structures.  

When Master of Ceremonies and IAEC Regional Director Joseph J. Neto of Joseph Neto & Associates, Inc. and EESF Fundraising Committee Chairman Bill Mogg of Lift-Tech. Ltd. took to the podium to begin the presentations and prize drawings, everyone seemed ready to gather together to commemorate the special evening. Neto thanked IAEC Executive Director Sheila Swett for attending this year’s event, and Daniel Swett, also in attendance, for updating and redesigning the IAEC website. Neto recognized and thanked National Association of Elevator Contractors Executive Director Teresa Witham and GAL Manufacturing Corp.’s Doug Witham for attending the dinner cruise as well. Neto and Mogg then presented EESF Executive Director Barbara Allen with a check for US$15,000, raised from the proceeds of the dinner cruise. “Donations from this year’s event will help educate more than 50,000 children around the country about elevator and escalator safety,” Allen said. “And, over the past 20 years, this event has helped educate more than one million children.” Allen thanked all in attendance for their continued generosity and support.

Once the prizes were raffled off, amid much cheering and congratulations, the ship soon pulled up to its dock, signaling the end of the evening. According to Lift-Tech, Ltd.’s executive vice president, Melissa Aponte, the night was a success by all accounts: “This event is always a good time, but tonight was very well attended and brought in some new elements that made it extra special.” The date for next year’s dinner cruise will be announced in the EW Calendar of Events soon.

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