The Black Point Inn has been a dominant landmark on Scarborough’s coast since 1878. It is there, in its spacious and lavish ballroom, that the Kiwanis Club has held its fundraising gala for the Maine Children’s Cancer Program for eight years.

But now, said Paul Bernard of the Scarborough Kiwanis Club, Friday’s silent auction and benefit will be the final time the event will be hosted by the inn.

“This is one of the last public events they’ll have here,” said Bernard. “Then they start tearing things down, which is really sad. We don’t know what we’re going to do next year.”

A company called BPI Partners bought the inn last year, and in August received final town approval for plans to redevelop the property. When the inn closes for the season in November, renovations will begin that will reduce inn’s size, the first major construction work done at the property the inn since 1923. The porch, living room, dining room, lobby and bar will remain mostly the same, but many other things will change. The current 84 rooms will be cut back to 24. And with the planned development of some of the inn’s land into single-family homes, galas such as the Kiwanis Club’s fundraiser will probably no longer fit.

“For Scarborough people it’s sort of the grande dame of the town,” said Bernard. “You never get the chance to go there because you live here. The benefit is a chance for local people to participate in that ambiance and history.”

According to Bernard, through eight years the club has raised about $150,000. Last year the amount was $28,000, and this year they hope to raise about $25,000.

“We are able to write a large check every year,” said Sylvia Most, a Scarborough town councilor and member of the Kiwanis Club.

Kiwanis member Cindy Convery helped organize the silent auction portion of the benefit.

“We really have planes, trains and automobiles,” she said. Some of the items include two Jet Blue tickets to New York, two tickets for the Downeaster train and a trip to Nova Scotia on the Cat ferry.

“We also have weird things like teeth whitening packages,” said Convery. There will also be door prizes, she added, and a raffle prize of a diamond and sapphire necklace from Day’s Jewelers.

The prizes and auction items are great, said Bernard, but a major attraction is the food.

“The food is just incredible,” said Bernard. “Come enjoy sumptuous hors d’oeuvres and decadent desserts.”

The Kiwanis Club’s Gala Ball is Friday, Oct. 20 at the Black Point Inn in Scarborough.

Tickets are $60 and available at Gorham Savings Bank and Maine Bank and Trust in Scarborough. They are also for sale on the Maine Children’s Cancer Program Web site www.mmc.rg/mmc_body.cfm?id=2324.

The event starts at 6 p.m. The silent auction runs from 6:30 p.m.- 9 p.m.

The Black Point Inn in Scarborough will host its last large event on Friday. Once it closes for the season this November, the first renovations since 1923 will drastically change the Scarborough land mark.


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