"We are pleased to host our fifth annual Black Diamond Garden Party at the Asa and Harry Packer Mansions again this year," said Bill Moyer, president, St. Luke's Hospital - Miners Campus.

"We invite our community to join us as we celebrate and raise funds to support our new St. Luke's Miners Heart and Vascular Center."

Micah Gursky, director of development, stated, "This year's event will be a business-casual garden party featuring food with an international flair, tethered hot air balloon rides (weather permitting), live classical piano and jazz music, guided tours of the Asa Packer Mansion and Kemmerer Carriage House." He also pointed out that visitors will be able to participate in the "Travel of History" game and learn about various modes of transportation in Victorian times. Wearing Victorian era costumes, Mauch Chunk Historic Characters will lend ambience to the event by mingling with guests.

"Last year, many of the guests commented that there wasn't enough time to engage in all of the activities," said Diane Luicana, five-year Black Diamond Committee chairwoman, "I recommend that guests arrive promptly, wear comfortable shoes and bring a camera! You'll never know who you will meet, and the hot air balloon should make for some wonderful pictures and memories."

Proceeds from this year's event will help construct a Heart and Vascular Center at the hospital. The new center, which is costing the hospital more than $2 million according to Moyer, will provide full access to the latest treatments and technology including echocardiograms, EKGs, holter monitoring and outpatient visits.

The outpatient center, located on the ground floor immediately adjacent to the hospital's main lobby, will occupy the space formerly held by administrative office and St. Luke's physical therapy. Gursky said, "The center will be staffed by experienced and skilled cardiologists of St. Luke's Cardiology Associates, to include Palmerton native Christopher Cutitta, DO; Richard Kolecki, MD; Hazleton native Lynn Moran, DO; and Sobhan Kodali, MD." It will also provide access to heart specialists for local patients to receive the identical cardiology care with the same cardiologists that also serve St. Luke's Heart and Vascular Center on Eighth Avenue in Bethlehem. Staff estimate the completion date of the new center to be late August.

For more information about the event, which will take place on Saturday, June 2 from 6 to 9 p.m, or tickets and sponsorship opportunities, contact Gursky at (570) 645-8118, stop by the hospital or visit www.slhn.org/blackdiamond [1]. St. Luke's Miners Hospital is a non-profit charitable hospital and donations are tax deductible.

"Past Black Diamond events have helped construct a new Critical Care Unit, establish a new Day Room for our nursing home residents, develop a Cardiopulmonary Rehab Unit and has helped us move forward with plans for a new Recovery Room," added Moyer, adding, "The event is truly a partnership and celebration with our community."