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Welcome the Holiday Season with Gilda’s Gift of Giving

Just before Thanksgiving each year, the community gets a special chance to show its support of those whose lives have been impacted by cancer and express its gratitude for Gilda’s Desert Cities, the unique non-profit organization that provides them with emotional and educational support—all while having fun.

The occasion is the popular Gilda’s Gift of Giving Luncheon, Boutique and Fashion Show, being held this year at the Hyatt Regency Indian Wells Resort & Spa on Thursday and Friday, November 17 and 18.

This major event is expected to draw 500 caring supporters of the cancer cause, many of whom also happen to love high fashion and enjoy kicking off the holiday season with a bit of boutique shopping. Attendees are attracted both by the 29-vendor boutique featuring distinctive jewelry, clothing, accessories and decorative items that is open both days, and the luncheon on day two featuring a glamorous runway fashion show with this year’s fashions presented by Los Angeles-based designer Margi Kent.

According to Gilda’s President and CEO Maria Elena Geyer, two new attractions have been added this year that are exciting Gift of Giving attendees. The first, co-chaired by Karen Bell and Lori Romania, is a festive “Girls Night Out” on Thursday evening, with live flamenco guitar, wine and hors d’oeuvres enhancing the boutique experience.

The second is a trunk show immediately following the fashion show, which will give everyone the opportunity to go backstage, meet designer Margi Kent in person, and purchase the apparel they just saw modeled so stunningly on the runway.

Reminding the audience of why their support of the Gilda’s professionally led, no-cost program of emotional support is so important will be two cancer survivors telling their compelling stories, as well as honoring Peter Wasserman, a generous philanthropist who focuses his giving on local cancer organizations and has served on the Board of Directors of Gilda’s Desert Cities for many years.

“It would not be possible to hold a major event of this caliber without the sponsorship of many generous individuals and organizations,” Geyer said, “and we’re grateful to them all.” Event Partners are the Wasserman Foundation, The Auen Foundation, Annette Bloch, Sally Nordstrom, Prime Time International, Carleen and Charles Riach, Eisenhower Lucy Curci Cancer Center, Desert Regional Medical Center Comprehensive Cancer Center, Desert Orthopedic Center and Desert Oasis Healthcare. Media Partners are Palm Springs Life, The Desert Sun, Alpha Media, and Desert Health®.

Gilda’s Gift of Giving boutique hours are Thursday, November 17 from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Friday, November 18 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., then again from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admission and parking are free. Girls Night Out at the boutique is November 17 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 in advance (online only, at and $35 at the door.

The November18 luncheon/fashion show begins at 12:00 p.m. Tickets are $175 and can be purchased by calling Gilda’s at (760) 770.5678 or online at

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