Resident Feature

The Social Event of the Season 

May was mental health awareness month, and Discovery Counseling Center’s hugely successful fundraiser, An Evening of Music and Laughter, played to over 300 people on the 19th. As if moving the annual event from the fall to the spring wasn’t enough, the originator of this night of song and comedy also moved/changed the venue. “Having sold out the Village Theater in downtown Danville the prior 6 years, the location this year was the beautiful 300 seat Tahoe Auditorium located within the Bishop Ranch Roundhouse in San Ramon” says Mike Copeland, the Bill Graham type creator of the show and its charismatic host. “The Roundhouse is one of the preeminent event venues in the East Bay and we were very excited about stepping up the size and scope of our show”. Sunset Development is teaming up with Discovery Counseling Center to host this year’s event. 

The spring show featured musical headliner Fleetwood Macrame, an entertaining and energetic Fleetwood Mac tribute band. Opening the show, was the hysterically funny, Bay Area based comedian, Shawn Felipe. “Who doesn’t like Fleetwood Mac music?” said Mary Verstraete, a show committee member from the beginning. She added, “Shawn Felipe was hilarious, and I can’t wait to see him again.” 

Over the past eight years, the show has featured some incredibly talented musicians such as Eric Martin of Mr. Big, David Victor from BOSTON, Nashville songwriter Paul Jefferson, Jeff Campbell (solo and with his band Static & Surrender) Stung – a tribute to The Police and The Malodors – Vanderbilt’s award winning acapella group. The night has featured emerging artists such as Sophia Pecoraro, Kiley Rothchild, Hays & Company and Courtney Randall. Along the way, the show has also introduced the audience to comedians such as Bryan Kellen, Karen Rontowski, Sammy Obeid, Tony Camin, Anthony Hill and David Vanavermaete. 

Discovery Counseling Center is a community based non-profit organization serving the San Ramon Valley for over 50 years. Discovery Counseling Center’s mission is to be the community’s leader in mental wellness by: 

Providing affordable, high quality, culturally appropriate and accessible counseling services and programs; 

Offering excellent and highly regarded training for future mental health professionals; 

Creating greater awareness of the prevalence of mental wellness issues in our community and the importance of early treatment. 

Serving as the community’s advocate in securing adequate funding and resources for the treatment of mental wellness issues. 

Proceeds from this entertaining show are critical in helping Discovery provide counseling to families and children going through stressful and difficult times. “Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, donors and patrons, Discovery can offer affordable and high-quality counseling services to families in need,” Copeland added. 

With so much media focus on the importance of mental health treatment in our communities, this highly entertaining fundraiser is integral to funding the critically important programs that Discovery offers. The show picks up momentum every year and has proven to be an incredibly fun evening and quite the social event of the season, albeit, a new season. 

By Michael Mooney, Resident Since 2001