Even a party that annually includes a private jet and chances to win an impromptu weekend to New York City can take things up a notch – both in terms of festivities and fundraising.

The eighth annual Maine Suitcase Party on Sept. 20 raised a record-breaking $160,000 – enough to send 64 children with life-threatening illnesses and their families to Camp Sunshine on Sebago Lake.

This year’s big bash at the MAC Air Group private hangar in South Portland included drawings for helicopter rides over Portland and chances to win up to $1,000 cash in a Pick-a-Suitcase game based on the television show “Deal or No Deal.” Guests took selfies with Miss Maine Carolyn Brady and Patriots cheerleaders Dana Richardson and Kaitlyn Morris, danced with the funky party band Motor Booty Affair and gawked at fast cars from Jaguar Land Rover Scarborough and, of course, at MAC Air Group’s even faster jet.

“How many times can we dress up, see luxury cars and take a chance on flying to New York?” said Rebecca Kingsley of sponsor Keller Williams Realty. “It’s a great kickoff to a weekend.”

After posing in front of the jet, Tim and Meg Dermody of Gorham talked about Camp Sunshine, where they spent a week in June 2013 with their son Finnian, who was diagnosed with brain cancer as a kindergartener, and his younger sister Shayla.

“Camp Sunshine is for the whole family,” Tim Dermody said. “Not only is it a place for families to connect with others who are going through the same thing but also for the children to bond with kids going through the same thing, whether they have an illness or are a sibling.”

“It’s an amazing connection,” Meg Dermody said, adding that Finnian is now a seven-year survivor. “We are so grateful.”

Amy Paradysz is a freelance writer based in Scarborough. She can be reached at [email protected].

Comments are not available on this story.