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Diablo’s annual roundup of our editors’ and readers’ favorites. 

The East Bay SPCA, which has locations in both Oakland and Dublin, 
went all out for its yearly soiree in May. Along with the virtual program 
enjoyed by more than 350 participants, there were both live and silent 
auctions, fundraising activities, cute animal videos, a game of bingo, and 
a drive-through where guests could pick up their preordered food and wine kits and enter a raffle. To help save the lives of shelter animals and find them forever homes, consider giving an online donation.

At this free in-person event and virtual 
extravaganza, pet lovers and their furry friends joined Tony La Russa’s Animal 
Rescue Foundation (ARF) for the 21st 
annual Animals on Broadway, which 
took place at Walnut Creek’s Broadway 
Plaza. With ARF booths set up outdoors, guests were able to join in on all the 
festive fun and help the nonprofit 
garner over $93,000 for animals in need. 
Donations are always welcome online, 
as all funds will go toward ARF’s shelter 
and adoptions, mobile services for 
low-income populations, disaster relief, 
and much more.

Instead of going virtual, the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano was 
able to host its annual fundraiser in person. However, social distancing was involved, as the open-air event took place at Concord’s West Wind Solano Drive-In. Many individuals and their families came out to support the cause of fighting hunger, and Betty Yu—a reporter for KPIX Channel 5—was the 
emcee for the memorable evening. In total, the event raised enough money 
to provide nearly 500,000 meals, which is a record-breaking amount that will greatly help the community.

Celebrating its 45th anniversary, LifeLong 
Medical Care hosted its annual gala virtually 
for the first time. This included an innovative platform that allowed for interaction among guests, a DJ, dancing, and an after-party. 
Michael LeNoir, M.D.—a pediatrician, allergist, 
and health communicator—was awarded 
LifeLong’s Health Care Advocate Award. The 
gala raised $172,000, which will go toward 
the organization’s goal of ensuring access to 
medical, dental, and behavioral health care 
for all. Additionally, $23,800 was garnered for 
LifeLong’s street medicine teams, which 
help individuals who are experiencing 
homelessness.

In the May issue, Diablo featured 
15 local women who are trailblazers 
in their respective fields, and three 
of them are innovators in the world 
of comedy. Laurie Kilmartin, Amy 
Miller, and Zahra Noorbakhsh—
all brilliant stand-up comics—took 
part in the Diablo Women Comedy night, a virtual event that kept guests laughing. The program began with 
Barney Fonzi, president and publisher 
of Diablo Publications, who was 
joined by Matt Teichmann, a 
mixologist with On the Rocks 
Bartending. Together, the two 
concocted a signature drink 
called the Pink Warrior. Then, the 
VIP audience, also enjoying their own Pink Warriors, were able to join 
the livestream. Miller, who was the 
host for the evening, started the 
show, and was followed by acts 
from Kilmartin and Noorbakhsh.

The Oakland Museum of California reopened to the public on June 18, after a long closure due to the pandemic and more than a year of renovations. Diablo spoke with director and CEO Lori Fogarty about the museum’s exciting new spaces and collaborations, its growth as a civic institution, and its commitment to racial and social justice.