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San Juan Capistrano residents and philanthropists Jim and Sheila Peterson will be honored for their ongoing support of Mission San Juan preservation efforts at the Romance of the Mission gala on Sept. 15. Photo: Courtesy
San Juan Capistrano residents and philanthropists Jim and Sheila Peterson will be honored for their ongoing support of Mission San Juan preservation efforts at the Romance of the Mission gala on Sept. 15. Photo: Courtesy

The Capistrano Dispatch

Mission San Juan Capistrano’s annual Romance of the Mission benefit gala is planned for Friday, Sept. 15, on the historic Mission grounds.

San Juan Capistrano residents and philanthropists Jim and Sheila Peterson will be honored for their ongoing support of Mission San Juan preservation efforts and Grammy, and Tony Award winner Heather Headley is this year’s concert artist.

The Peterson’s have made a significant impact to numerous Mission preservation projects including Gate House preservation, Sala preservation, education programs, museum upgrades, new exhibit development, and art and artifacts preservation.

“It is truly humbling for Sheila and me to be recognized as the 2017 Romance of the Mission honorees, as the Mission Preservation Foundation’s incredible accomplishments never cease to inspire us,” Jim Peterson said. “We hope others will share our passion and support for the Mission San Juan Capistrano to continue its legacy of community service and education, as well as its efforts to preserve important artifacts and remain a unique part of Orange County’s history.”

Heather Headley will perform in the ruins of the Great Stone Church at this year's Romance of the Mission gala. Photo: Courtesy
Heather Headley will perform in the ruins of the Great Stone Church at this year’s Romance of the Mission gala. Photo: Courtesy

Heather Headley, who will perform in the ruins of the Great Stone Church, earned numerous accolades for her debut album “This Is Who I Am” and Grammy Award nominations for Best New Artist and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. Headley also played Nala in the original Tony-winning Broadway musical “The Lion King,” and in 2016 she returned to Broadway playing Shug Avery in “The Color Purple.”

All proceeds from the benefit gala will be used to protect and preserve the historic fabric of the Mission San Juan Capistrano site and its ongoing projects to sustain and improve the guest experience of over 300,000 annual visitors.

The benefit gala begins at 6 p.m. with an opening reception in the Mission’s front gardens, followed by the concert, historic bell ringing and candlelight four-course plated dinner hosted by The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel in the main courtyard.

Mission San Juan Capistrano is located at 26801 Ortega Highway in San Juan Capistrano. For tickets, underwriting opportunities or more information about the benefit gala, contact Barb Beier at 949.234.1323 or visit www.missionsjc.com.

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