Montezuma Ball, one of New Mexico’s oldest traditions, has selected United Way of Central New Mexico and Explora as beneficiaries of this year’s annual fundraising ball to be held on November 20, 2021, at Hotel Albuquerque in Old Town.
“We are honored to be part of an event that has such a rich history of generosity in our community,” said Rodney Prunty, President and CEO of United Way of Central New Mexico. “This event allows us the opportunity to celebrate the wonderful diversity and many strengths of our community.”
Rachel, London, and Billy Gupton and Lynn and Craig Trojahn will be recognized as 2021 Ball’s Royal Family. The Gupton and Trojahn Family have collectively donated more than $500,000 via the United Way of Central New Mexico since 2000. Additionally, in 2020, they founded the Feeding Families Fund which raised over $250,000, provided over 16,000 meals and supported 41 locally-owned restaurants as part of UWCNM’s $1.4 million in emergency COVID-19 relief funding. The Feeding Families Fund was a model program that other United Ways in the state adopted during the pandemic.
Montezuma Ball is over 100 years old. The first event was held in 1902 and was a tradition that continued until the last historic ball was held at the Alvarado Hotel in Albuquerque in 1968. In 2000, with the intention to give back to our rich cultural community, Jim Long and Heritage Hotels and Resorts restored this New Mexico tradition as part of the inauguration of its new Alvarado Ballroom at Hotel Albuquerque. In the years since, the Montezuma Ball has raised several million dollars for nonprofits across New Mexico.
“United Way of Central New Mexico was chosen as the primary beneficiary for this year’s Montezuma Ball because they are so community-focused,” said Jim Long, Founder and CEO of Heritage Hotels & Resorts. “United Way is helping many people build better lives, which is especially important in these times.”
Past beneficiaries of the ball include Dual Language Education of New Mexico, Junior Achievement of New Mexico, Accion (now DreamSpring), Museum of NM Foundation, YDI, WESST, the National Institute of Flamenco, Animal Humane of New Mexico, KIMO Foundation, and many other organizations.
To purchase a ticket, visit www.uwcnm.org/2021-montezuma-ball