Photo courtesy of Victor Carrillo. BAM Attendees enjoying the tastes and sounds of A Miracle on El Paseo, Nov. 23, 2019.
BY ESTEFANIA MOREIRA
Palm Desert’s fashion district, El Paseo, was transformed into a winter wonderland for the 13th annual Bighorn Behind A Miracle (BAM) on El Paseo, on Nov. 23.
The event was hosted by The Shops on El Paseo, the Coachella Valley’s premier luxury shopping and dining destination. BAM donates 100% of the proceeds to organizations throughout the Coachella Valley that help cancer patients and their families. The event opened with a fashion runway from Grayse and Escada. Guests were able to enjoy models hitting off the runaway show wearing designer clothes, watch street dancers on the side of streets and experience the desert’s biggest block party.
BIGHORN BAM founder Selby Dunham, BAM chair Debbie Aarthun and co-chair Cathy Johnson lit up the beautiful 60-foot El Paseo Christmas tree.
Live entertainment from the tribute band Stevie Nicks Illusion kicked off the night with Diana Grace in vocals, Monty Sommer lead guitarist, Rich Smith on drums, Jeff Bennett on bass and Dan Haley on keyboard. The attendees were dancing and singing along to classic Stevie Nicks songs.
A five-story ferris wheel was one of the festive highlights for family-fun activities. Children and their parents were waiting in long lines trying to get a ride. The event had its own Santa in Santa’s Village and an interactive snow globe for family photo ops.
Over 25 of the Valley’s top restaurants and vendors like Lulus, Flemings, Daily Grill and Mastro’s Steakhouse offered tastings for all attendees. There were long lines of people trying to get a sample of their favorite foods.
Free alcohol and beverages were also given to attendees. VIP guests were treated with delicious sweets and alcohol from Mitch’s On El Paseo and Lulu’s restaurant.
Daily Grill offered their famous chicken pot pie, a warm, cozy and delicious feature that has been served since 1984. This is one of their classic American foods availabe in their restaurant.
Fleming’s top chef Adam Morales was promoting the restaurant’s soups and a few food samples they offer, “Come try our soups,” he said. Morales and other Fleming vendors attracted attendees with their cheery and welcoming personalities.
A new vegan restaurant opening on Dec. 14, called The Wildest Restaurant and Bar was serving glass samples of their refreshing watermelon ahi poke. Stuft Pizza Bar and Grill offered samples of mushroom soup tastings and a mild spicy fish served in a corn tortilla with pico de gallo and a tint of salsa verde.
Mastro’s Steakhouse on El Paseo offered their sweet caramel mouth-watering cheesecake as samples to attendees.
French Rotisserie Cafe in La Quinta had a rich Belgium chocolate sugar-free mousse desert as their feature sample of the night. Vendors promoted that they will be opening a second location next year at Town Center Way in Palm Desert.
Behind the miracle is The BAM fundraiser, founded by cancer survivor Selby Dunham, with the inspiration to save lives. As a cancer survivor, she began to raise funds with BIGHORN Golf Club. Intending to provide compassion, love and support for those who are fighting cancer in the Coachella Valley, their assistance has helped over 100,000 people.
Over the past twelve years, with the addition to raising money through event ticket sales, BAM has donated over $8.7 million, Eisenhower Lucy Curci, Cancer Center, The Pendleton Foundation and Desert Regional Medical Center. The focus on giving patients their best chance of defeating cancer.
This also supports Koning’s 3D KBCT diagnostic breast imaging device, the supersonic breast ultrasound machine and BIGHORN BAM transit van service providing round-trip rides to cancer patients undergoing radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
A Miracle On El Paseo is to support them and thank those who have donated to their organization. Donations also go to improve existing equipment and purchasing new equipment.
Ending the event was entertainment with The Dreamboats, a Canadian rock and roll band with the sound of The Beatles and The Beach Boys. The event saved the best for last as their music blasted the streets. The crowd went wild, listening to classic American cover songs.
The 2019 sponsors and partners for the event included: the City of Palm Desert, IndiGO Auto Group, Hot Purple Energy, KESQ, Rapport International Furniture and The Shops of El Paseo.