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LOS ANGELES, CA, November 09, 2018 /24-7PressRelease/ -- WildAid, the global nonprofit organization leading the fight to end the illegal wildlife trade, today announced it has received $750,000 worth of donations for this year's live and silent auction taking place at its fundraising gala on Nov. 10 at the Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel.
Donors, supporters and celebrities will have the opportunity to bid on a variety of luxury items and once-in-a-lifetime experiences provided by major sponsors Ker & Downey, ROAR Africa, Blue Marble and Lindblad Expeditions, including swimming with whale sharks in Mexico, gorilla trekking in East Africa, a Sebastião SALGADO photo print, a crystal-covered life-sized DiscoShark and much more.
Last year's gala raised a record $2.4 million. Pre-bidding has already begun online for silent auction items and will remain open until Nov. 9 at 7 p.m. PST, after which the highest bid for each item will become the starting bid at the gala the following evening. Click here to access pre-bidding as well as the full silent and live auction list.
Some of this year's featured auction items include:
• A 12-night East Africa trip including gorilla trekking in East Africa donated by ROAR AFRICA.
• A 9-night in-depth exploration of Arctic Svalbard aboard the National Geographic Explorer donated by Lindblad Expeditions.
• Up to 20 guests will have a private four-course southern-comfort meal prepared by Chef Art Smith, a two-timed James Beard Award winner and former personal chef to Oprah Winfrey. Kristin Chenoweth will kick-off the evening as a guest emcee to lead the special entertainment.
• An 11-night African safari with WildAid and CEO Peter Knights. The trip also features excellent food, hot air balloon rides, a visit with the two remaining northern white rhinos, as well as to an elephant orphanage. Donated by WildAid.
• A 12-night private desert safari trip for two in Namibia African Travel Resource in partnership with Natural Selection, Olive Exclusive, Wilderness Safaris and Wolwedans.
• DiscoShark - Kevin McHugh, creator of DiscoShark, has successfully merged his interest of marine life and passion for conservation into one-of-a-kind pioneering sculptures, including this custom sculpture piee encrusted with Swarovski crystals. Measurement: 66" long, 31" high, 18" w and weighs 34 pounds. Donated by Kevin McHugh.
• Plains zebra in Okavango Delta, Botswana, 2007 - This is an extremely rare opportunity to take home a print by Sebastião SALGADO, one of the best photographers in the world. Donated by Sebastião SALGADO.
With sponsors including Bentley Heritage, Palettera, Yao Family Wines and The Toms Animal Initiative, "An Evening in China" will feature musical entertainment by 16-time Grammy-award winner David Foster, as well as captivating performances from The Cirque. Guests will enjoy a vegetarian meal specially curated by celebrity Master Chef Martin Yan following a cocktail and hors d'oeuvres reception.
WildAid produces impactful, Hollywood-quality public service announcements for a fraction of the cost and distributes them to millions of viewers a week through extensive pro bono and earned media placements. In September, WildAid released a new report showing a dramatic decline in rhino horn prices (70 percent). In recent years, shark fin imports to China have gone down by 80 percent, ivory and rhino horn prices have plummeted by more than 50 percent in China and Vietnam, and China closed its ivory market at the end of 2017.
WildAid works with high profile ambassadors including HRH Prince William, Lupita Nyong'o, Bryce Dallas Howard, Richard Branson, Danai Gurira, Bo Derek, Josh Duhamel, Jackie Chan, Yao Ming and many more.
Past Gala Attendees include Josh Duhamel, Ian Somerhalder, Nikki Reed, Yao Ming, Fergie, Maggie Q, Dylan McDermott, Chevy Chase, Jared Leto, John Corbett, Bo Derek, Michael Cudlitz, Larry King, Hayden Panettiere and others.
Additional sponsorship provided by SheppardMullin, European Collision Center, nerano, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati, CLASS Magazine, Haibu, Lana Jewelry and Africa Travel Resource.
WildAid is a non-profit organization with a mission to end the illegal wildlife trade in our lifetimes. While most wildlife conservation groups focus on protecting animals from poaching, WildAid primarily works to reduce global consumption of wildlife products such as shark fin and elephant ivory by persuading consumers and providing comprehensive marine enforcement. Recent WildAid campaigns such as the #JoinTheHerd initiative have brought together millions of people to speak out about the poaching crisis affecting African elephants. With an unrivaled portfolio of celebrity ambassadors - including Prince William and Yao Ming - and global network of media partners, WildAid leverages $230 million in annual pro bono media support with a simple message: When the Buying Stops, the Killing Can Too. For more information, visit WildAid.org and follow us @WildAid.
For photographs, video footage or interviews, please contact Brendi Rawlin at firstname.lastname@example.org +1 619 549 3066.
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