Lead gift from long-time supporter Joan Loos paves the way for success

NAPLES, Florida (February 21, 2022) – On February 18, more than 300 generous Southwest Florida residents gathered in support of the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples for its 10th anniversary gala, raising more than $1 million in support of children and families in the community.

The event, which featured an appearance by Marvel Cinematic Universe star and new Captain America, Anthony Mackie, was highlighted by a $100,000 matching gift by long-time CMON supporter Joan Loos. Her generosity was quickly matched by those in attendance. Proceeds from the event will be used to support free and low-cost admissions to the museum so that more children and families can experience the joy of educational play.

“We are beyond grateful to our community of supporters who continue to believe in CMON’s mission to be a place for children and families to play, learn, and dream together,” said CMON CEO Dena Rae Hancock. “It’s inspiring to see the generosity of Southwest Florida in action once again.”

Co-chaired by Sonya and Brian Sawyer with honorary chair Shelia Smith Davis, Night at the Museum: Superheroes Unite! provided guests an experience unlike any other gala in the area. Decked out in their best superhero costumes, patrons enjoyed creative cuisine and cocktails from Crave Culinaire, entertainment by Pzazz Productions and DJ Timothee Lovelock, and an exciting live auction curated by Whip Fundraising. WINK News morning anchors Corey Lazar and Lindsey Sablan, dressed as Clark Kent and Lois Lane, served as the evening’s emcees.

CMON wants to especially thank the following people and organizations who made Night at the Museum: Superheroes Unite! a success: Joan Loos, Simone and Scott Lutgert, Bob Clifford, Home-Tech, Dena Rae Hancock and P. Robert Caito, Shelia Smith Davis, Jamie and Chris Essig and Primrose Schools, Harmon-Meek Gallery, Jodie and Mark Montgomery, The Laser Lounge Spa, Nannette Staropoli and Content Clix, GenesisCare, Gulfshore Life, Provident Jewelry Naples and Ernst Benz, and all our table sponsors, underwriters, and supporters. 

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About the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples (CMON)
The Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples is a brain-building powerhouse and Southwest Florida’s first museum devoted for children and families to learn through play. With hands-on exhibit galleries, the accessible museum invites visitors of all ages to journey through the swamps of the Everglades, weave through a maze, climb a two-story banyan tree, or experiment with the water play station. Children can become a weather forecaster, a farmer, a chef, a fisherman, an artist, an architect or a veterinarian; explore the cold of an igloo, the whoosh of the wind, the sound of the sea, and the effects of gravity. Throughout the day special activities encourage our guests to get involved, try something new and be energized. CMON offers a variety of interactive exhibits providing kids with education, play, learning, science, technology, engineering, inventions, space exploration, art, math, storybooks, creation, building, sensory, and child development.

Contact: Alexa Nargi
Senior Manager of Marketing and Engagement
Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples
239-260-1709 | anargi@cmon.org

Photos courtesy of Nicole Nixon Commercial Photography/Gulfshore Life