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February 8, 2011 > Valentine's Day shows love for a good cause

Valentine's Day shows love for a good cause

By Julie Grabowski
Photos By courtesy of Induz

Far from being about chocolates, roses, and paper hearts, Valentine's Day is about celebrating the love in our lives and enjoying the company of those most important to us. This holiday, individuals and families can extend the reach of their love in a lasting and impactful way by taking part in Induz's Valentine Masti on Saturday, February 12.

Induz is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 2004 by a group of Silicon Valley professionals dedicated to arts and culture education in the Bay Area and across the globe. Operating under the banner "Where Art Meets Heart," Induz works to expose socially and economically disadvantaged children to the joy and practice of art, to nurture artistic talent, and foster connection between all cultures through art.

Their Tulika Program serves underprivileged children in India by providing lessons in the art forms of dance, drawing, music, and painting. The first project was launched in Silghat, Assam in June 2008, and programs have since been established in Bangalore and the rural village of Katwa in Bengal.

In a time where arts programs are the first to receive cuts or be eliminated all together, or in developing countries where art is of little importance, Induz hopes to get the joy and benefits of art growing and make a difference in young lives. Proceeds from the Valentine Masti will support existing programs as well as contribute to launching new after-school art programs for low-income schools in the Bay Area.

"The Induz Valentine Masti 2011 is a celebration of love for the entire family. Spread your love and bring a smile to the face of a deserving child," says Induz founder and President Ray Mitra.

Since its inception the Valentine Masti has generated a sold out crowd, and now in its fourth year is looking once again to fill all 350 available seats at Chandni Restaurant in Newark. Emceed by Sitarree TV host Kavita Arora, the evening is a complete dining and entertainment package, featuring a gourmet dinner and bar, music performances by Bay Area stars Sangeeta Rege, Malini Banerjee, Manohar Bijor, Neel Sarkar, and Krishna Subramanian, and Belly Dancing, Flamenco, and Bollywood dance performances from Laury and team and Manthan Group. Raju Chitambaram will host interactive couples games with prizes courtesy of PNG Jewelers, while Kanyadaan Boutique will supply the award for Best Dressed Couple, and San Ramon Family Dental awards the Smiling Soulmate Contest winners. The dance party follows at 10 p.m. with DJ Andy Atta rocking the house.

A separate kids area will keep the younger attendees entertained with arts and crafts activities, face painting, movies and more.

Organizers hope to raise at least $5,000 through the event as well as gain awareness in the community about their organization and what they are trying to do. "The nonprofit implores local residents interested in art as a way of bringing diverse communities and cultures together to volunteer with Induz and/or support its mission and work," says Mitra.

The event is sure to be one to remember, not only for a great time, but for the opportunity to make a difference. So, this Valentine's Day celebrate not only the love you have, but the love you can give, a gift that will make a lasting difference in the lives of countless others.

Tickets for the Valentine Masti are $35 for adults and $25 for children ages 5-12; children under 5 are free. The VIP SweetHeart Special is $100 per couple and includes two front row seats, a bottle of champagne, rose and chocolates. Group discounts are available at $30 each for 10 adults or more. Purchase tickets at https://www.sulekha.com/ticketsV3/buytickets.aspx?cid=601254 or www.induz.org.
Those who are unable to attend but wish to support this cause can donate online. For sponsorship or more information, contact Ray Mitra at (510) 875-5006 or e-mail info@induz.org.

Valentine Masti 2011
Saturday, February 12
6:30 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.
Chandni Restaurant
5748 Mowry School Rd., Newark
(510) 875-5006
www.induz.org
Tickets: $25 - $35


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