Royal treatment at Mad Hatter's Gala

Fri, Apr 13 2012
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The Mad Hatter’s Gala, MacEwan University’s annual event to raise funds for student scholarships, bursaries and awards, is typically a night of glamour and glitz (and outrageous hats). This year, however, the event goes one step further with the promise that one generous donor will receive the royal treatment.

Inspired by the whirlwind tour of Prince William and his wife, Catherine, the winning bidder of the aptly named “Will and Kate Diamond package” will retrace their royal journey through the Northwest Territories – and will receive a diamond from the Diavik Diamond Mine. The stone, valued at $21,800, will be custom set by celebrity jeweller Harry Winston.

The winning bidder and guest will travel to secluded Blachford Lake Lodge by float plane and take a canoe ride to “Royal Honeymoon Island,” where they will be served the same six-course meal enjoyed by Will and Kate.

The second part of the journey will take them to have the diamond set into a piece of jewellery of their choosing at the Harry Winston Salon in New York City. This marks the first time Harry Winston will set a diamond brought in by a customer. The Will and Kate Diamond package is valued at $45,000.

Kim Falconer, manager, university advancement, says part of what makes this northern package so special is that the connection between MacEwan University and the Northwest Territories “really showcases the Northwest Territories and their commitment to supporting educational opportunities.”

In addition to the Will and Kate Diamond package, three other items will be auctioned live: a trip to the British Open in Scotland, a private guided ski tour in Jasper, and a dinner club (dinner for eight at eight Edmonton restaurants).

“The package is unique in the sense that you couldn’t just plan a trip like this yourself,” says Kim.