| Hope E. Tremblay
WESTFIELD – The Westfield Athenaeum is hosting “A Storybook Holiday,” a wine tasting, to benefit the Rise to Knowledge Campaign, on Dec. 6 in the Athenaeum’s Great Hall.
The event is from 6-8 p.m. and includes wine tasting, live music, hors d’oeuvres and a wreath and centerpiece raffle.
Tickets are $30 at the Athenaeum, 6 Elm St., and at westath.org.
Refreshments will be prepared by Westfield Technical Academy culinary students and the Westfield High School Jazz Band will perform.
Phipps Super Store is providing wine for the tasting, which Rise to Knowledge Campaign Co-chair Jayne Mulligan said will be offered in four stations, poured by “celebrity” pourers, including Westfield Public Schools Superintendent Stefan Czaporowski and Westfield News Assistant Managing Editor Hope E. Tremblay. A Phipps staff member will educate participants about the wines at each station.
This is not the Athenaeum’s first wine tasting, but it is the first tasting hosted in the library.
“Last year we were looking around the building at this time of year and saw how pretty it is at Christmas,” Mulligan said. “We want to showcase the building.”
The Rise to Knowledge Campaign supports renovations to the Athenaeum. The first two of three phases of renovations are complete. Mulligan said the campaign committee needs to raise between $700,000 – $1 million for the final phase.
“We’re hoping to raise the funds and start it next year,” said Mulligan, noting that the last part of the renovations include upgrades in the Great Hall, Jasper Rand Art Gallery, Elizabeth Reed Room and staff restroom.
“Most of the infrastructure needs in those rooms were already done,” Mulligan said, noting that phase one renovations included a new wheelchair lift, renovations to the Boys and Girls Library, Teen Space and Resource Room, as well as electrical and fiber work, including in the three spaces that will be addressed next year.
“We need to put in new flooring, paint and do some electrical and heating work,” Mulligan said. “It adds up.”
Once the final phase is complete, the total renovation cost will be approximately $1.7 million.
Mulligan said the wine tasting is the perfect way to start the evening, and suggested that the perfect ending would be to walk across the street to the Westfield Woman’s Club where the Westfield Theater Group will perform its 20th anniversary production of “A Christmas Carol, ” which starts at 7:30 p.m.