On Friday, May 15th, the San Antonio Public Library Foundation hosted over 400 people at the Central Library in celebration of the building’s 20th Anniversary. Library supporters arrived and were greeted by Neiman Marcus models as they walked the red carpet and posed for photo ops in the central lobby. The space was transformed into a celestial wonder by Bryan Azar of Austin, TX based Ilios Lighting Design, complete with constellations that moved ever so slightly on the twilight washed walls of the lobby. The network of knowledge accessible to library patrons is, like the universe, limitless, which inspired the theme of the evening. Mexican Modern Under the Stars celebrated both the late Mexican architect Ricardo Legorreta’s masterful design of the downtown Library and everything that the Library has within its bright colored walls. Guests enjoyed champagne and cocktails in the Library’s technology area, Connect, and were greeted by Co-Chairs Guillermo Nicolás, and Nick and Liecie Hollis. Keynote speaker, the Honorable Julián Castro was welcomed to the stage by Gala Co-Chairs, Library Foundation Chair Shannon Murphy-Sachanowicz and Library Foundation President, Tracey Ramsey Bennett. Castro’s inspiring words set the tone for the premier screening of the Library and Library Foundation’s public service announcement. A video that was generously underwritten by Susan and Aubra Franklin of Franklin Park Senior Living and produced by Heather Angel Chandler of Innovative MultiMedia Group.
Entertainment featuring Henry Brun signaled the close of the program and the commencement of the delectable meal prepared by Rosemary’s Catering and The RK Group. Guests made their way to their tables on the first and second floors set in four special areas of the Library. As they dined by candlelight, guests stargazed within the Central Lobby around the celebrated Fernando Botero’s Caballo Tomaño Grande sculpture. Bold orange and magenta lighting set other dining rooms ablaze and attendees in the gallery, the second floor Atrium, and the Marie Swartz Art Resource Center admired Dale Chihuly’s Fiesta Tower sculpture. The modern white paper flower arrangements were custom made by Illusions and Flair Floral. The celestial and literary themed papel picado table runners were also custom made by Kathleen Trenchard of San Antonio based Cut-It-Out. Libations were plentiful thanks to Silver Eagle Distributors, William Grant & Sons, Spec’s Corporate Giving, Milagro Tequila, and Bekki and Greg Kowalski. After a fabulous meal George Cisneros led his famous Urban 15 dancers throughout the Library rousing everyone to get their groove on in the ultra chic Neiman Marcus “Legorreta Lounge” for the gala after party. Models adorned after party goers with clay copita cup necklaces leading them to the Milagro Tequila bar to get the party started. Dallas based Professor D provided the beats that kept the dance floor packed until midnight. For those that needed a break from boogieing, the RK group passed mini paletas from SA POPS and El Mirador served up delicious street tacos and empanaditas. The sold out event raised $120,000.00 for the Library Foundation, an essential non-profit organization that bolsters the City’s Library budget making programming, technology, special projects and material acquisition possible for the library system.