Fine Dining • Entertainment • Bagpipes • Dessert • Black Tie, Uniform or Ethnic Dress
Silent Auction of the Rare and the Exotic
The Reef on the Water Restaurant
880 S Harbor Scenic Dr. Long Beach, CA 90802
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Join us for our once-a-year gala; amazing adventure stories told first-hand.
There is no click when you step on a landmine; only an instantaneous shockwave that reduces muscle and bone to a pink mist.
Aki Ra, taken from his jungle home as a toddler by the Khmer Rouge, was taught to lay land mines. He was captured by the Vietnamese and made to do the same work. At 19, he became an officer in the Khmer army, as a demolition expert.
Aki Ra had an epiphany, and wished to atone for his younger transgressions. He began wandered the countryside seeking land mines, disarming them one at a time with a pocket knife and pliers. Suffering from PTSD, he retreated often into the jungle as his place of refuge. He is still at home only in the jungle.
This is the story of a child soldier who became a CNN HERO, and winner of the MANHAE PEACE PRIZE from South Korea. The second half of this amazing story is how Bill and Jill Morse left a plush life in Southern California to live in Cambodia and not only blow up land mines for a living, but build numerous schools and maintain them.
is the author of the nonfiction New York Times bestseller Kabul Beauty School and the bestselling novel The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul.
Deborah was a cofounder and director of the first modern beauty academy in Afghanistan, and also founded the nonprofit Oasis Rescue.
Rodriguez arrived in Afghanistan in 2001, and stayed throughout the war. In addition to her beauty school, she opened a western style coffee house, a magnet for U.N. workers, embassy personnel, diplomats, mercenaries, soldiers of fortune.
In a whirlwind romance, Deborah married an Afghan citizen and was completely immersed in local culture.
The combination of her high profile, political activism and the realization that she was married to a warlord, forced her to flee when her life was in danger.
Today, Rodriguez lives in Mazatlán, Mexico, where she owns Tippy Toes salon & spa. She continues to write international best sellers, including Margarita Wednesdays, and Return to The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul.
Steve Elkins has returned again from Honduras with new information.
Political strife, dire security problems and some of the most forbidding jungle on earth did not deter the expedition to the La Mosquitia region of Honduras.
The mountainous area is fabled for its remoteness and the legend about a vanished civilization- Ciudad Blanca, lost city of white stone.
Stories of the lost city date back before the conquest of Mexico by Hernán Cortés in the 16th century. Cortés sought a land that exceeded the Aztec empire in grandeur and richness.
Steve Elkins, an ancient-history buff and documentary maker, and his partner Bill Benenson spearheaded the use of LIDAR, a form of radar that deploys lasers. Targeting a valley in Mosquitia, a lidar-equipped plane took detailed readings of the rugged, jungle canopy revealing intriguing shapes beneath.
Be present for Steve’s jaw-dropping report.