A Most Special Afternoon Tea Experience: The Sacred Heart Fundraiser Tea
I recently had the immense honor of being the keynote speaker at the 17th Annual Sacred Heart Fundraiser Tea, also known as the Patty Blanton tea.
The event, held in Appling, Georgia, was the quintessential experience of Southern hospitality. It was an utterly enchanting afternoon.
Word of the Sacred Heart Fundraiser Tea has grown and flourished over the years, gaining legendary status as the premier annual tea event in the region.
With only 80 coveted tickets available, it sells out within days of going on sale.
Sacred Heart keeps a wait list and, as usual, this year’s wait list was long with ladies hoping to get the good news that a ticket had become available for them.
I was well aware of this illustrious event having read about it in Tea Time Magazine, long before I had developed my own tea line or had even become a certified Afternoon Tea Etiquette trainer.
Being invited to speak at this tea event, which is such a cherished tradition, was a dream come true.
From the horsehead and horseshoe shaped tea sandwiches to the mini-Kentucky Derby pies, it was apparent at every turn just how much Patty had poured her dedication into every detail of this spectacular day.
Every year, Patty and her friends personally prepare all the food, offering a unique and delicious afternoon tea menu.
Thoughtful detailing extended to the table settings, where each table of four was set with its own special China pattern, adding yet another touch of southern elegance.
Every year guests are gifted with personalized hand painted gift bags. This year the bags contained Patty’s homemade jam, her signature goat’s milk soap, a hand-painted (by Patty) vase, and a hand-painted print of the menu. I was so honored to have Patty include a tin of my Cherry Rose Green Tea in the fabulous gift bags this year.
All the beautiful tables and heavenly tea-fare and all of the ladies in summer dresses and hats were set against the backdrop of Patty’s enchanting garden.
Patty’s garden is spectacular- adorned with fountains, a koi pond, and a breathtaking variety of maple trees and plant life. The ambiance created in this gorgeous natural setting elevated everything all the more. It was absolutely stunning!
I am pictured here with Millie Huff, Executive Director of the Sacred Heart Cultural Center. My friends and I toured the facility. What a beautiful building!
This historic building, once a Catholic church on the brink of ruin, was rescued by a family from Augusta and transformed into a thriving arts center for the community.
I was accompanied by my dear friends, Caroline and Ida, who are always ready for tea adventures. For all of us, this was such a fun opportunity to meet and connect with new people.
I designed Caroline’s pink and blue fascinator to go with her dress.
As I’ve long believed, tea has an extraordinary power to bring people together in the most wonderful ways, and this tea was no exception.
In chatting with everyone, I got a surprise when I discovered that one of the guests had attended the same high school as my husband—a great reminder of the small world we live in.
When I left, I took with me wonderful memories of the day and a hope to attend next year’s Sacred Heart Fundraiser Tea.
My deepest and most heartfelt thanks to Patty for inviting me to speak at her beyond fabulous event and for allowing me the joyful experience of this spectacular day.
Learn more about how you can support The Sacred Hearts Cultural Center here