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The Muscular Dystrophy Association to host ‘Toast to Life’ national virtual gala on YouTube this November

Muscular Dystrophy Association Amber Joi Celine
Watkins-Domalski family with Celine who lives with SMA and is receiving life-changing treatment at the MDA Care Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. / © Muscular Dystrophy Association

The Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) have announced that their annual national gala, ‘Toast to Life,’ will be hosted virtually. Registration, donations, and auction participation are all free and open to the public. On November 9, at 8 p.m. ET, the virtual gala will begin. The event will be broadcast live on MDA’s YouTube channel from the Chateau Luxe in Phoenix, Arizona, with generous sponsorship from Cigna, DT Midstream, Outback Bowl, StructureTone, Sarepta, National Seating and Mobility, and NuMotion, as the community comes together virtually to support the organization’s mission.

April Warnecke, a longstanding supporter of the organization and anchor, reporter, and meteorologist at 3 TV and KTVK, a CBS5 affiliate in Phoenix, Arizona, will present the virtual event.

“Over the last 18 months because of COVID-19 many things have changed, but one thing stayed the same and that’s the need for donations and generosity towards the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The world that the MDA families live in didn’t stop because of the pandemic and that means that the MDA team had to work twice as hard to fulfill their obligations, but as usual this amazing team did it again,” said Marc Rivas, Committee Chair of the Toast to Life gala and co-emcee.

The event’s mission is to raise awareness and funds for muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related neuromuscular diseases, and updates on progress in the field will be on full display, with stories from MDA families like the Watkins-Domalski family and 2-year-old daughter Céline receiving life-changing treatment from the multidisciplinary MDA Care Center team at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Doug Clough from Arizona, who lives with ALS, and MDA National Ambassador Ethan LyBrand, who lives with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, as well as alumnus MDA National Ambassador Reagan Imhoff, who lives with spinal muscular atrophy, will be among the families featured at the event (SMA).