Party Like 007 This Bonfire Night

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Local expat portal XpatLoop.com is once again inviting guests to #FeelGoodDoGood at its popular annual charity fundraising gala, which, it says, “unites good-hearted guests from the international community in Hungary.”

Publisher Stephen Linfitt says some tickets are still available for the 18+ party on Saturday, Nov. 4, but adds that they are going fast. He urged people to “please book now to avoid missing out.”

For those that can last that long, the evening, hosted once again by the Budapest Marriott Hotel, runs from 6 p.m. on Saturday until 1 a.m. on Sunday morning.

Guests of honor at the Bonfire Night party include ambassadors Paul Fox (United Kindom), Ragnar Almqvist (Ireland), Désirée Bonis (the Netherlands), Jorge Roza de Oliveira (Portugal), Masato Otaka (Japan), and Mohamed El Shinawy (Egypt), as well as Duncan Graham, chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce in Hungary, and the Rev. Frank Hegedűs, the priest at St. Margaret’s Anglican Church in Budapest.

The virtual bonfire and fireworks display reflect the British tradition of Bonfire Night, also called Guy Fawkes Night and is held annually across the United Kingdom to mark the anniversary of the foiling of a plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament in London in 1605. The party also celebrates XpatLoop’s 23rd anniversary.

 “As a Brit and as ambassador, I am proud that XpatLoop.com has held celebrations for Bonfire Night for over a decade. Not only have they been some of the best parties in town, but also events that have raised incredible amounts of funds for a number of worthy causes,” said Ambassador Fox.

As the tagline about feeling good and doing good clearly suggests, the party has twin goals: supporting charity while having a fun evening. There are three principal beneficiaries.

The Magic Lamp Wish Granting Foundation (Csodalámpa) helps children aged between three and 18

suffering from life-threatening illnesses.

The Young People in Need non-profit organization (Rászoruló Fiatalok) focuses on solutions for the emotional abuse of Hungarian children up to 18 but also supports other local charities helping children in need. The third benificiary is the Hungarian Red Cross.

Bond’s Birthday

One twist this year is that, as it’s the 70th birthday of British icon 007 (Ian Fleming introduced “Bond, James Bond” to the world in 1953), it is suggested that guests come as a character from a Bond movie. A prize will be awarded for the best costume.

Otherwise, it is the usual smart-casual dress code. Either way, there will be a “red carpet” photo wall as guests arrive with a complementary printed picture.

Entertainment will include live pop, soul and funky tunes by Fruzsi & Badman and the the Just Show Band, which will play 007 theme tunes during dinner and return later in the evening to perform dance classics and get the party moving. That particular baton will be passed to DJ Woods to keep the dancefloor busy into the small hours.

The usual international snack buffet will be served by many of Budapest’s best eateries and free-flowing alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.

MC Hans Peterson will guide proceedings all evening with TV star Zsuzsa Demcsák. They will host a Live Auction and announce the winners of a Silent Auction. The proceeds from the charity raffle will go to Food Bank Aid to help Ukrainian Refugees in Budapest.

There are a range of tickets, including new VIP packages introduced this year, available on xpatloop.com

This article was first published in the Budapest Business Journal print issue of October 20, 2023.

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