The American Museum of Natural History was glowing last Thursday, March 8th, 2012 at their Spring Gala, which is New York’s longest running junior benefit.  This year’s fundraiser offered influential young philanthropists an opportunity to dine under the giant blue whale and dance with the dinosaurs, as the museum transformed its cavernous halls into an intimate reception area.

Corners of the Roosevelt Rotunda were filled with candlelit champagne bars, mock street carts peddling soft pretzels and snacks, and a silent auction filled with amazing luxury merchandise.  Some of the goodies up for grabs included a Fendi handbag, spin classes at Soul Cycle, custom-made suits by Tobia, a Townhouse spa package and tickets to sporting events for the Yankees and New Jersey Nets.


As a sponsor for the evening, Saks Fifth Avenue gifted a private shopping session and a $1,000 gift card to one lucky auction winner.  They further supported the evening by donating 5% of all purchases at their Manhattan store during the month of February from any shoppers who used their Saks credit card and designated the Museum at checkout.  What a great way to give back!


After cocktail hour and an intimate dinner, guests moved to the Akeley African Mammals room to party it up with music from DJ Jus-Ske.  The black tie benefit’s theme was Bright Young Things, in anticipation of the museum’s soon-to-open exhibit, Creatures of Light: Nature’s Bioluminescence.  Patrons were asked to wear bright and bold colors in honor of the theme, and they did so with enthusiasm.  Hundreds of neon glow necklaces were scattered around the room to encourage guests to be playful.  Even the elephants got hooked on the glow! See gallery below for even more great photos.

There’s nothing like being in the stunning space of the American Museum of Natural History after-hours, with a glass of champagne in your hand and a shiny disco ball casting a spell over the room with its glimmer.  Knowing that all of the funds raised during the evening would support the museum’s educational programming and allow thousands of underserved city children to visit this revered museum… well, that was just priceless.


To get in on the fun next year, visit for more information and tickets starting at just $200 per person.



Photos courtesy of AMNH by D. Finnin, R. Mickens and by Leslie Woodruff for Socially Superlative.