Coming Together for Kula: Gala 2016

Coming Together for Kula: Gala 2016

On Monday, November 7th, we were proud to host our 9th annual Gala, Wine & Dine for Kula: A KULAnary Cause, at the Hilton Pearl River.

Every year, our Gala is a wonderful opportunity for the incredible Kula community to come together to connect, hear updates on our work, and taste delicious dishes from some of the best restaurants and culinary artists in the area. As we continue to expand to support more populations, our community of supporters is more important than ever.

This year, we were able to reach 95% of our goal for 2017! For those of you who were unable to join us, there’s still time for you to support us in funding our 2017 programs. If you’re able to make a contribution, please do so here

For the first time ever, we included a “Giving Forest,” a new way for the Kula community to help us grow our programming. The Giving Forest was made up of several symbolic trees, each representing a different element of Kula’s work. Leading up to and throughout the event, supporters could purchase a $50, $75 or $100 leaf for the tree of their choice. For each leaf purchased, donors received a beautiful bracelet made with love by our volunteers. In the words of our Program Director, Loretta Turner:

The Giving Forest was truly a magical place. In the midst of the usual Gala vibe filled with mingling, wine, laughter and food, you couldn’t help but notice the glowing, loving and inviting energy of the Forest. Once inside, it honestly felt like I was transported to a serene and enchanted place. The message and purpose of the Giving Forest was abundant, and it was a lovely touch to the Gala event.

We’d also like to continue to share a special fund that is incredibly close to our hearts. On Thursday, July 14th, Barbara Infeld, one of Kula’s greatest supporters and mother of our founder, Geri Topfer, passed away after a three year battle with breast and ovarian cancer. Throughout the course of her treatment, practicing yoga helped Barbara to manage her symptoms and improve her overall well-being. She wanted to ensure that even more people who are battling cancer have access to the practice and experience the same benefits. If you were unable to attend the Gala, and would like to make a donation in Barbara’s honor, you can do so here.

We invite you to watch the videos below, and celebrate all that we’ve been able to accomplish together over the course of this past year. Thank you, again, for all that you do! 

And a huge thank you to the incredible restaurants, culinary artists, and sponsors who made this year's Gala possible: 

Restaurants & Culinary Artists:

 Amano Pizza

American Cut

Axia Taverna


Blue Moon Mexican Cafe

Caffe Anello

Carousel Cakes

Chef Hunter Zampa

Contemporary Foods

Esty Street

Finks BBQ Smokehouse

Hohokus Inn

La Promenade

Marcello’s Ristorante

Masa Sushi & Grill

Mish Mish

Morton’s The Steakhouse


Organica Natural Foods

Park & Orchard

Pearl River Catering

Rockland Community College Hospitality Department

Saddle River Inn


Varka Estiatorio


Event Sponsors 





Hackensack Meridian Health

North Jersey Brain and Spine

Sheridan Healthcorp, Inc.



The Body Image Boutique

Englewood Hospital & Medical Center

Jen and David Graf

Hackensack Meridian Foundation

Nancy & Steve Manket

Kim & Bill Pressman

David Sanzari

Dr. Mark Schlesinger

Geri and Steven Topfer

Valley Health System

The Whole Child Center



The Becker Family

Christian Healthcare Center

Frederick Wildman & Sons

Steve Greenberg

Hackensack Pascack Valley Health

HUMC Clinical & Patient Care Services

Inserra Shoprite Stores

Jill and Paul McKeon

Vicki & Michael Reisbaum

Inserra Shoprite

Kathleen Simmons




Behaved Brain Wellness Center

Children of Joy Pediatrics

Paul Crawley

Ernst Winzer Cleaners

The Enchanted Heart Collection/Bazaar Star Beadery

Penni Feiner & Francois Giliberti

Hackensack Gastroenterolgy Associates

John Theurer Cancer Center

Barbara and Thomas Kornreich

La Promenade

Mobility Elevator & Lift Corp

Metro Eyecare

Munn & Associates

Helene Naftali

Owens Group

Denise Ratcliffe

Dr. Gail Sobel & Richard Sobel

Dr. Erica Song, Vibrant Life Medicine

Wells Fargo Private Banking

Wostbrock Home



AAM Investment Partners, Keith Freiband

Michael Ashendorf, Travel Techsperts Powered by Frosch

Martin Infante

Eileen and Steve Farbman

Edmund W. Granski

Leslie and John Lahoud

Mortgage Masters

Karen E. Morse

Phyllis & Scott Rowley

Scenic Landscaping

Select Office Suites

The Wuhl Family