Dream Foundation hosted its 15th Annual Dreamland Gala on Nov. 5 at the Bacara Resort & Spa in Santa Barbara in an effort to raise awareness about the foundation’s mission to fulfill the end-of-life Dreams of terminally-ill adults, offering inspiration, comfort, and closure. The vital funds raised allow the organization to maintain its history of never turning down a qualified Dream applicant, a record it has maintained since its inception.

The evening honored special guests, Dreamers Jonathan White and Daniella Dominic Enriquez, who shared their Dream stories. Jonathan, 36, a music lover from Brooklyn, N.Y., has worked with wood since the age of 13, now an experienced cabinet maker. He has always dreamed of making his own lasting contribution to music by building a guitar. His request was for a guitar side-bending machine, which would allow him to craft acoustic guitars and would bring his Dream to life. On behalf of Dream Foundation, Jonathan was presented his own bending machine by world-renowned guitar craftsman and Roger Sadowsky, at Sadowsky’s workshop in Long Island City, N.Y. Also donated to Jonathan was a guitar-making kit by Stewart-MacDonald. Sadowsky who spent the afternoon mentoring Jonathan on the art of guitar-making to the delight of both of them. Jonathan plans to craft a guitar as a lasting memory for his 14-year-old son. Jonathan, his wife Olga, and their baby daughter, Ophelia were in attendance.


Signature Patron Gala Menu Card

Daniella Domiic Eriquez, 21, who until her terminal diagnosis was pursing her education at the University of Tennessee, wrote to Dream Foundation about visiting her family in California.“This is something that would allow me to spend precious time with my family,” Daniella said. “It would offer me and my family a great deal of peace and comfort.” In June, Dream Foundation flew Daniella to California to embrace her family one last time. Daniella attended the gala and shared her touching story.
Bacara Resort & Spa Executive Chef Vincent Lesage and his staff presented an outstanding dinner menu of roasted baby beet salad, braised beef short ribs with quinoa couscous and that was gourmet healthy, presented exquisitely, and followed by a beautiful lemon tart sweet ending. The dinner was paired with Villa San Juliette, Rusack and Babcock Wines. Patron Tequila provided sexy serving bars where a menu of cocktails designed for the event were served during the reception and silent auction before dinner where exotic auction items included items like like Hollywood Bowl box seats and an exotic trip to South Africa’s Zulu Nyala Game Reserve.
Chef Lesage Braised Beef Short Ribs

Chef Lesage Braised Beef Short Ribs

The enchanting and surreal evening included a one of a kind treat for the senses performance by Quixotic; an experimental product that happens when technology, live music, contemporary dance, and Cirque du Soleil arts come together. Classically trained floor and aerial performers, including former Cirque du Soleil puppeteer Eros Biox interacting with visual effects, award-winning live musicians, and responsive environment action to create a multi-sensory experience. Its fusion of visuals and manipulation of light and rhythm transcended language and made this collective of artists an audience a pleasure.

Guests also enjoyed an interactive live auction hosted by long-time Dream Foundation supporters and Santa Barbara locals Andrew and Ivana Firestone. Featured live auction packages included extravagant vacations to Portugal, Spain and Morocco, Buenos Aires and Chile and a visit to Four Seasons Costa Rica with tickets from Alaska Airlines to name a few. Also auctioned was “Breakfast with Betty” — breakfast at Bergdorf Goodman in Manhattan with fashion legend Betty Halbreich, followed by a personalized styling session and more.
Highlighting the celebration was Grammy Award-winning artist, Estelle. This London born musician rocked the ballroom at Bacara, and she is best known for her electric mix of various musical genres. Estelle has collaborated with top names in the business including David Guetta, John Legend, Robin Thicke, and Kanye West on “American Boy” for which she won a Grammy for Best Rap/Song Collaboration as well as being nominated for Song of the Year. Following the gala, Generation Dream hosted an exclusive after-party with world-renowned DJ, Chris Cox where guests danced the night away while sipping on Patron Tequila and Beau Joie Champagne.
Villa San Juliette Wines

Villa San Juliette Wines

“We are eternally grateful to our local community and those across the nation that continue to bring thousands of Dreams to life each year with their support, time, and resources,” said Kisa Heyer, Dream Foundation’s CEO. “Dreamland is an opportunity to share our successes, our Dream stories, and raise vital funds in an effort to fulfill more Dreams for those mothers, brothers, veterans, and families,” Heyer said.

Dream Foundation acknowledged the support of Dreamland’s Platinum Sponsors: Colleen Barnett-Taylor & Michael Taylor, Barnett Clutches and Cables; Jan & Bill Sanger, Envision Healthcare; Genentech; Kindred Gentiva Hospice Foundation; and Indagare Travel as well as its dedicated event committee: Daryl Stegall, event chair, Baret Boisson, Debra Borden, Kyle Brace, Julie Chaminand, Kendall Conrad, Debbie Darke, Lisa Hagerman, Lynette Hall, Caroline Harrah, Jennifer Hecht, Robin Himovitz, Kimi Matar, Stephanie Nicks, Kathy Nicolson, Beth Perry, Kim Robertson, Christina Rottman, and Steve Shulem. More information can be found at

About Bonnie Carroll

Bonnie Carroll has been a food/travel/lifestyle writer since 1983. She is the founder & publisher of Bonnie Carroll’s Life Bites News (, does travel and food reporting on local Radio/TV, and contributes to a variety of national and international travel/lifestyle publications. She is a member of IFWTWA and NATJA. Contact her at