Napa in Newport Gala Celebrates 10 Years of Raising Funds for CureDuchenne

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CureDuchenne founders Paul and Debra Miller with Chef Ken Frank at the 2023 Napa in Newport event.

Orange County is home to hundreds of nonprofit organizations that host fundraising galas and luncheons attended by generous donors and patrons.

One of the local philanthropic highlights every year is the annual Napa in Newport charity event that raises funds for Newport Beach-based CureDuchenne, an organization that has a passionate pursuit to fund and find a cure for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a genetic neuromuscular disease.

After several years down south at the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort, Napa in Newport celebrates its 10th anniversary by returning to Newport Beach on April 20 at the new luxurious Pendry Newport Beach in Fashion Island.

Like its name suggests, Napa in Newport features dozens of Napa Valley vintners who host a Grand Tasting followed by a wine-pairing dinner. The event includes auction items highlighting rare wines, luxurious vacations, and one-of-a-kind experiences.

According to information from CureDuchenne, the evening is set to be more intimate than ever before, with limited attendance and new weekend ticket packages that include hotel accommodations and amenities.

CureDuchenne Founders Paul and Debra Miller with son Hawken

Napa in Newport had its origins when Paul and Debra Miller, founders of CureDuchenne and parents of a young man with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, attended Auction Napa Valley, the wine growing region’s extravagant annual wine auction.

There, a chance encounter with Vineyard 29 proprietors Chuck and Anne McMinn sparked the idea of bringing the best of Napa to Newport Beach for a charity event. This idea rapidly transformed into reality with the inaugural Napa in Newport in 2015, featuring 29 vintners and eventually growing to include 43 of the most prestigious Napa wineries.

This year Alpha Omega Winery is the Honorary Vintner Chair, while Chef Charles Phan, Executive Chef and Founder of Slanted Door in Napa and San Francisco who was recognized as “Best Chef: California” by the prestigious James Beard Foundation, will curate a gourmet dinner.

CureDuchenne will also honor Douglas S. Ingram, president and Chief Executive Officer of Sarepta Therapeutics, for his dedication to advancing treatments and support for individuals with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Rebecca Thompson, Jospeh Perulli, Master Sommelier Michael Jordan at Napa in Newport

To date, Napa in Newport has helped raise more than $10.6 million for CureDuchenne, which is renowned as a global leader in research, patient care and innovation for improving and extending the lives of those living with Duchenne, one of the most common and severe forms of muscular dystrophy. It affects roughly 1 in 5,000 male births and is 100 percent fatal.

“Over the past decade, Napa in Newport has not just been an event; it’s been a movement that has had tremendous impact,” said Debra Miller, founder and CEO of CureDuchenne.

According to CureDuchenne, they have leveraged the funds raised at Napa in Newport to make strategic investments in promising research and significantly drive scientific progress.

Ballroom ready to welcome guests to Napa in Newport

There is more hope and progress toward a cure than ever before, including the first gene therapy for Duchenne developed by Sarepta Therapeutics and approved by the FDA, and multiple treatments with potential to delay progression of the disease in the FDA drug approval pipeline.

Event sponsors include Porsche Newport Beach, Porsche Irvine, South Coast Plaza, MWA Luxury, and Caviar Company.

Limited sponsorships and tickets are still available. The event’s silent auction will be online and open for public bidding. For more information on tickets, sponsorships, participating vintners, and silent auction, please visit www.napainnewport.org.

For more information on how to help raise awareness and funds needed for research, please visit www.cureduchenne.org.

Wine being poured at Napa in Newport
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