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    The greatest two minutes in sports is not the only happening in Louisville, Kentucky during Derby weekend…..some of the most recognizable figures in business, entertainment and the sports industry converge on the Bluegrass State as guests of the Grand Gala.   

    The Eighth Annual Grand Gala will be held Saturday, May 2nd at the Galt House East Ballroom.

    The Ivory Queen of Soul Teena Marie will perform at the hottest ticket in town.  The four time-
    Grammy nominated singer, songwriter and producer will headline the event.  Teena's new CD
    entitled, Congo Square is a combination of lyrics, melodies and sounds inspired by the heavens.  

    The songstress says the CD will leave you smiling as you sway to the incredible songs penned to touch those who long for a musical connection.    

    At the age of 19, Marie signed to her dream label - Motown Records under the guidance and mentorship  of the legendary Rick James. Her 1979 debut Wild and Peaceful, produced by James, garnered a #8 R&B single with "I'm A Sucker For Your Love." One year later, her second and third albums, Lady T and Irons in the Fire produced the hit classics "Behind The Groove" and "I Need Your Loving" respectively. Marie also took creative control of her projects by this time, and in 1981, released the platinum selling " It Must Be Magic " which featured the up-tempo " Square Biz " and slow jam " Portuguese Love."  

    Grand Gala organizer Rohena Miller says “I’m thrilled to have this legendary performer at this year’s event.  She brings a wide range of music disciplines and she’s a great entertainer.  Our guests should be very happy with this year’s choice.  She is starting her World Tour the next week, so we are getting her first!!”.  

    Some of the past gala guests include Michael Jordan, Bob Johnson, Chris Tucker, Gabrielle Union, Patti LaBelle, Earth,Wind & Fire, Dwyane Wade, Tracey Edmonds, Star Jones, Tom Joyner and Julius “Dr. J” Erving.   

    A limited number of tickets are still available.  To purchase tickets call 1-502-583-5243.  

    To obtain media credentials for both events please contact Sherlene Shanklin, Media &

    Red Carpet Coordinator at 502-295-0435.  

    Proceeds from the Grand Gala benefit the 828 Foundation which identifies and

    supports several non-profits across the community.  Organizations we have assisted in the past seven years include the United Negro College Fund, Young Life Youth Alive and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.   

    The Grand Gala VIP Reception will be held on Friday, May 1st at the new and renovated Gillespie Building and featuring the famed musician Kevin Whalum.

    The Eighth Annual Grand Gala will be held at 8 p.m. on Saturday, May 2nd at the Galt House East.   The Red Carpet entrance will follow at 9 p.m. on Main Street in downtown Louisville.  For additional information, please visit:

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