The organizing committee of the Bollywood Bang fundraiser is all smiles after raising $61,000 for two Vernon charities. (Photo submitted)

The organizing committee of the Bollywood Bang fundraiser is all smiles after raising $61,000 for two Vernon charities. (Photo submitted)

Vernon’s Bollywood Bang collects big bucks

Popular event raises $61,000 for a pair of Vernon charities

One of the hottest events in town sizzles when it comes to raising cash.

Bollywood Bang had another successful year, raising $61,000 for North Okanagan charities.

The money raised will go a long way in helping this year’s recipients, the Canadian Mental Health Association Vernon and the Family Resource Centre Society for the North Okanagan.

“This is probably one of the biggest events we’ve had in our history in terms of money raised by an outside organization,” said Scott Manjak, executive director of the Family Resource Centre Society for the North Okanagan. “It is huge for us. We are very grateful to Dalvir (event coordinator Nahal), her team and to the event itself.”

Since 2013, Bollywood Bang events have raised more than $267,000 for organizations in Vernon.

“This year was especially hard given my health but we really wanted to make our fifth year as fun as possible,” said Nahal, who is battling cancer. “So with the support of my family, friends and a wonderful committee we got it done.

“I don’t discount the support from the local businesses either, the sponsors and prize donors played an instrumental role in ensuring we were successful.”

Bollywood Bang has grown into an extravaganza anticipated not only in the Okanagan but throughout B.C.

“This event literally bridges cultures and communities together like no other event,” said Nahal. “We sold 800 tickets in half an hour. This alone showcases how popular it has become.”

Nahal said she is truly humbled at how successful Bollywood Bang has become.

“What really surprised me was how many people travelled from outside of Vernon to attend the event,” she said. “I spoke to a well-known businessman from Kelowna and he said it was one of his favourite events to attend. When you hear that kind of feedback you know you are doing something right.”

TD Bank is a major sponsor of Bollywood Bang.

“TD is committed to helping build strong communities in the markets we serve,” said manager Doug Brayshaw. “We are thrilled that our sponsorships have helped events like Bollywood Bang.”

Other sponsors include Emco/Kohler, Alternative Funeral, Herbal Health Centre, Sunterra Custom Homes, Hillside Winery, and Kim Heizmann, whose deejay sponsorship kept the party going until midnight.