The Sultana Education Foundation’s Annual Gala is a party with a mission.  Held the third Saturday in September, the Gala is Sultana’s largest single fundraiser, traditionally generating more than $100,000 for various scholarship programs and to underwrite specific initiatives.  Sultana’s Gala features great entertainment, fantastic food/drink, and unparalleled waterfront venues.

The Cause

In addition to raising funds for scholarships via tickets and sponsorships, Sultana’s Annual Gala traditionally seeks support at the event for specific new programs or projects.  Funds raised at past Galas supported the planning and construction of the Foundation’s LEED Platinum Holt Center and underwrote major refits of the schooner SULTANA.


During its 2019 Gala Sultana will seek support for the initial phases of its new Lawrence Wetlands Preserve.  Located adjacent to the Foundation’s Holt Center in Chestertown, the 8.5 acre Preserve features a variety of terrestrial and aquatic habitats including upland forest, shrubland, swamp, non-tidal wetlands, and warm grass meadows.  The Preserve’s ecological diversity and close proximity to the Chester River will make it a powerful resource, helping students understand the connection between land use and the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Funds raised during the Gala will support the development of a trail and boardwalk network and allow students access to the property.


Sultana is proud to have NYC swing band Oh La La! as the featured entertainer for its 2019 Annual Gala.  Fronted by French chanteuse Marie Michèle, and comprised of some of the top jazz and world musicians in the New York area, Oh La La! have played for clubs and events in NYC and Europe for almost eight years.  Delighting everyone with their joyous 30’s and 40’s swing sound, delicate chanson française, and sultry bossa-nova, Oh La La! also loves to keep everyone dancing with classic Soul and Blues from the 50’s, and 60’s and funky Motown sounds!

Nous parlons français, et pouvons aussi jouer toute une soirée de chanson française…Laissez-nous vous transporter dans une nuit parisienne!


In addition to the great music at Sultana’s Annual Gala, the event will feature dinner by  Occasions Catering, and for 2019 we have added a special oyster experience featuring bivalves from five different regions of the Chesapeake Bay.  Guests will be able to taste and learn about the regional and environmental differences that make each variety so unique.

Featured purveyors include:

Shore Thing Shellfish, Tall Timbers, MD

Honga River Oyster Company, Toddville, MD

Hoopers Island Oyster Company, Hoopers Island, MD

Big Island Oyster Company, Gloucester, VA

Orchard Point Oyster Company, Chestertown, MD



After a three-year absence, the Sultana Education Foundation is proud to have its Annual Gala return to Clovelly Nurseries, an 800-acre waterfront farm just south of Chestertown.  With a hilltop venue that provides a panoramic view of the Chester River, we couldn’t think of a better location for our biggest party of the year.


Gala Sponsor

Music Sponsor

Venue Sponsor

Individual Sponsors

Jumbo ($1,000+)

Chris Havemeyer

Donald & Darby Hewes

Mary Anne & Blyth Reynolds

Harry Sears

Bill & Sandee Trakat

Herb & Kay Wilkinson


Market ($500+)

George Kreshock

Billy & Philippa Hollingsworth

Linda, Guyon & Julia Knight

Joyce Huber

Elizabeth Gross

Lyle & Dorothy Feisel

Sally & Peter Sweetser

Joanne & Matt Tobriner

Anonymous (2)

Petite ($250+)

Robert H. Busler

John Butterworth

Bill & Joanne Ghio

David & Patti Hegland

William & Nancy Low

Hanson & Linda Robbins

Eric and Lesley Schless

Shelby T. Strudwick

Brooke Logan Packard

Mary Pritchard

Dr. Clif West

Diana & Glenn Wilson


Interested in becoming a sponsor of Sultana’s Annual Gala?  Contact Madison Beres at mberes@sultanaeducation.org or 410-778-5954 ex 218.


What is the GPS Address of the Gala? 200 Clovelly Farm Lane, Chestertown, MD

What if I Don’t Have a GPS? Not to worry, here are traditional directions: From Chestertown and Points North: Follow MD Route 213 South through Chestertown.  After crossing the Chester River Bridge proceed for approximately 4.3 miles south on MD Route 213 to Rolphs Wharf Road.  Turn right on Rolphs Wharf Road and proceed 2.0 miles to the entrance to Clovelly Farm on your right (look for a white fence at the entrance and two large bushes).  Turn right onto Clovelly Farm Lane and follow the directional signs. From Centreville and Points South: Follow MD Route 213 North through Centreville.  Proceed for approximately 10.5 miles north on MD Route 213 to Rolphs Wharf Road.  Turn left on Rolphs Wharf Road and proceed 2.0 miles to the entrance to Clovelly Farm on your right (look for a white fence at the entrance and two large bushes).  Turn right onto Clovelly Farm Lane and follow the directional signs.

What do I Wear? Cocktail Attire is the order of the day…but remember that you will be on grass so spike heels can be a challenge!

Can I Purchase a Table?  Absolutely!  We sell ticketed groups of 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 in addition to individual tickets.  FYI, for 2019 guests will be seated at long rectangular tables, with each table likely having several different groups of people.

What Portion of My Ticket is Tax Deductible?  Thanks to advance sponsorship, up to 75% of your gala ticket may be tax-deductible. The final tax-deductible amount will be mailed to you following the event.

Is Disabled Parking Available?  Yes.  Please follow disabled parking signs as you enter the event.  Golf cart shuttles are also available from the parking area.

What Happens if it Rains?  This party works rain or shine.  We will only cancel if it seems unsafe.  If we have to cancel due to extreme weather, we will reschedule and/or refund your ticket purchase.