Bellarmine College Preparatory held its 43rd Golden Bell Auction on March 9. More than 650 guests attended the 1940s era-themed event, “Swing. Sip. Sway.”
The on-campus gala began with an optional Mass held in the Leontyne Chapel, celebrated by Fr. Mario Prietto, S.J., superior of the Bellarmine Jesuit community.
The reception, featuring hors d’ oeuvres provided by A Catered Affair, cocktails, and silent auction items, was followed by the program and fine dining entrees prepared by the Bellarmine culinary staff, led by executive chef Jeremy Soulia. The Invocation before the dinner was delivered by Fr. Richard Cobb, S.J., who this year celebrates his 70th year as a Jesuit.
Guests also enjoyed the sounds of musical entertainment throughout the evening, performed by the Speakeasies Swing Band. Professional auctioneer Mark Alman, who is also the parent of a Bellarmine alumnus, led the live auction that featured many unique items, including a concert and “meet and greet” with country music superstar Luke Bryan, a 2018 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport S 4×4 from the Normandin dealership, tickets to the Broadway production of Hamilton including a personal backstage tour by Bellarmine alumnus and Hamilton performer Ryan Vasquez, and a variety of dining and entertainment experiences. Proceeds from the annual Golden Bell Auction benefit Bellarmine College Prep’s Direct Financial Aid Fund.
With nearly 25 percent of Bellarmine’s 1,650 students receiving tuition assistance, the school’s financial aid budget next academic year is projected to exceed $5.1 million.
The Golden Bell Auction, held each spring, and the Bellarmine Mothers’ Guild Fashion Show for Financial Aid, held each fall, are the school’s annual signature fundraising events.