SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – More than 500 guests will be attending the City of Bright Nights Ball on Saturday night at MGM Springfield.

The City of Bright Nights Ball is the Spirit of Springfield’s largest annual fundraiser and helps to support the organization’s efforts to bring the community together in celebration. Some of the organization’s hallmark events include the World’s Largest Pancake Breakfast, Bright Nights at Forest Park, and the Star Spangled Springfield.

The glitz was certainly on full display at MGM Springfield for the event. This black-tie-only gala is sponsored by Western New England University and will have a ‘Gilded Glamour’ theme, where the decorations will be dripping with gold accents, and the tables will be dressed with gold candelabras flowing with flowers on every table.

The gala began at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception and silent auction, and guests had the chance to enjoy a gourmet dinner, bid on live and silent auctions, buy 50/50 raffle tickets, and dance to the music of Groove Authority during the event. There was also performances by The Eric Bascom Trio, Richie Mitnick, and Joe Saimeri.

During dinner, guests received greetings from U. S. Congressman Richard Neal, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, Dr. Robert E. Johnson, Western New England University President and the evening’s Honorary Chair, and Judith A. Matt, Spirit of Springfield President. 

Mayor General Gary Keefe, The Adjutant General for the Massachusetts National Guard, Colonel David Halasi-Kun, Commander of the 104th Fighter Wing at Barnes Air National Guard Base, and Colonel Gregory Buchanan, Commander of the 439th Airlift Wing at Westover Air Reserve Base, were honored during the event and highlighted in a brief video featuring the assignment of F-35 aircraft at Barnes Air National Guard Base in honor of Veterans Day.

“We have a great event tonight. We’ve been sold out since May. We have 520 guests, 40 people on the wait list, so it’s saying something good about the city,” expressed Spirit of Springfield President Judy Matt, “And I think everyone is going to have a great time. We really pull out all the stops for this and we are so thankful to Western New England University for being our sponsor tonight.”

The 2023 City of Bright Nights Ball is also sponsored by the following:

  • Baystate Health
  • Bulkley
  • Richardson & Gelinas
  • Charlie Arment Trucking
  • The Colvest Group
  • Comcast
  • Florence Bank
  • FR Investment Group
  • Gleason Johndrow Landscaping
  • Health New England (HNE)
  • Janet Johnson Bullard
  • M&T Bank
  • MassMutual
  • Mercy Medical Center
  • MGM Springfield
  • Monson Savings Bank
  • MP CPA
  • New England Business Machine
  • PeoplesBank
  • Sheraton Springfield
  • Springfield Business Improvement District
  • UMass Amherst Berthiuame Center for Entrepreneurship
  • Westfield Bank
  • Westfield State University

“I am honored to serve as Honorary Chair of the 2023 Spirit of Springfield City of Bright Nights Ball,” said WNE President Dr. Robert E. Johnson. “Western New England University is a proud member of the Springfield community, and I am pleased to represent our terrific students, faculty, and staff.  The relationship between WNE and the Bright Night’s Ball goes back many years. I am grateful to Judy Matt and the Spirit of Springfield Board for this great honor.”  

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