The Great Gala is Great. Really, it is. Over the past five years, led by WLU Director of Marketing Tammi Secrist, the staff and students at West Liberty University have transformed Glessner Auditorium at Oglebay Resort’s Wilson Lodge into a Great Gatsby-styled speakeasy, a vaudeville stage, a classic event featuring the meeting of Audrey Hepburn and Don Draper, and a post-World War II victory bash. Each year brings a different theme, and each year guests are able to escape back in time or to a different place completely. And at the end of the day thousands of dollars are raised for West Liberty University and its students.
The name and the idea of “The Great Gala” came about when the university set out on an aggressive push to move from a good college to a GREAT university.
WesBanco is the new title sponsor for West Liberty University’s annual Great Gala, which takes on a Hollywood theme this year. The evening of dining, dancing, and supporting higher education will take place on Saturday, April 25, 2015, at Glessner Auditorium, Oglebay Resort.
Over the past five years, the Great Gala has raised significant funds for West Liberty University students, and this year the proceeds will support the David T. Javersak College of Liberal Arts Scholarship. Well-known throughout the region as an active historian and author, Dr. Javersak joined the faculty in 1969 and served as the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts from 1986 – 2007. He is now Dean Emeritus of the School of Liberal Arts.
“This scholarship fund is a perfect example of the importance of the Great Gala. Students need scholarship money more than ever, and private dollars are essential,” said Executive Director of Development Angela Zambito Hill.
The evening gets started at 6:30 p.m on April 25 with a red carpet arrival of guests, complete with Academy Award commentators, who will describe the fashions. After a cocktail hour, dinner will be served.
“Everything is being planned around an Academy Award theme. Hollywood glamour, movie stars, and movie theme music will add to the festive evening of fun,” Hill said. “It’s a black tie affair, and we encourage guests to dress like movie stars.”
Music will be provided by Wheeling’s own Top 40 Variety cover band, Hit Play. Additional entertainment and surprises are planned.
Individual tickets are available also and priced at $150 individual or $275 per couple.
“It will be a wonderful evening and we look forward to the community’s attendance at Great Gala 2015 as we celebrate the Oscars! We thank WesBanco for their leadership and support in this effort to raise scholarship money and fulfill our mission of providing opportunity for a quality college education to our students,” Hill added.