Winners will select one of the following exclusive VIP experiences!
In true Highlander fashion, enjoy tasty Scottish treats and a unique behind the scenes tour at the Greenbar Distillery in downtown Los Angeles. Owner, and proud UCR alumna, Litty Matthew ’91 will share stories of how she created the world’s largest collection of organic spirits along with fun facts about the art of craft distillery. True to their eco-friendly roots, these radically sustainable master mixologists always plant a tree for every purchase made. (Note: Tasting tickets not included.)
Ready to run wild? Don’t miss your chance to meet UCR alumna Denise Verret ’88, CEO of the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, and join her team for an extraordinary journey through the heart of the park. Exotic animals, breathtaking floral displays, delicious eats, and a host of family-friendly activities are yours to enjoy, along with four complimentary one-day passes.
This wildflower season, grab your favorite hiking boots (or jump in a UCR four-wheel drive) with up to two of your guests and head out to explore the stunning beauty of Joshua Tree National Park in the company of UCR Ecologist Cameron Barrows. During this guided backroads tour, you’ll learn how climate change shapes this unique landscape, and what UCR researchers are doing to help protect it. This walking/driving expedition will be tailored to your and your guests’ level of fitness. Two free nights (up to $250 per night) at a nearby hotel in Palm Springs, plus a gourmet picnic, will round out this unique outdoor adventure.
Calling all LA Lakers and Clippers fans! Join UCR Men’s Basketball Coach, David Patrick, for a pre-game dinner plus four tickets (up to $120 each) to see one of your favorite Southern California NBA teams in action. Or if college hoops are more your thing, you and a guest can join UCR Athletics Director Tamica Smith Jones at one of the Final Four games in the 2021 Women’s NCAA Tournament.
Relax in luxury and be dazzled by the brilliant Festival of Lights holiday display (November 23 – January 6) at the historic Riverside Mission Inn. This package includes two free hotel nights (up to a $500 value). You’ll also enjoy a private tour of the famed UCR California Museum of Photography, the largest photographic center in the western United States, while exploring a dynamic mix of exhibitions, performances, and film screenings happening at UCR ARTS. (This VIP experience will be available for up to three of the winners.)
Want to know what really happened in Vegas? Take a trip to the strip and journey back in time at The Mob Museum with New York Times best-selling novelist and award-winning journalist Tod Goldberg. As the author of Gangster Nation, Gangsterland, and The House of Secrets, Tod knows where all the bodies are buried. Plus, as director of UCR’s MFA Program in Creative Writing, he spins an unforgettable tale. Throw in museum tickets plus a $500 voucher for your choice of Vegas hotel, and it would be a crime to miss it.
Lights! Camera! Action! Experience the glitz, glamor, and award-winning cinematography on display at the 2021 Palm Springs International Film Festival. Includes a $500 gift card to enable you and a guest to customize your experience by purchasing access to regular or special film screenings. Swing by UCR Palm Desert Center for lunch with award-winning creative writing faculty and a former studio head to get an insider’s view of the screen trade.
Time to get your cosplay fix! Join two of UCR’s comic-creating faculty superstars at the world-famous San Diego Comic-Con. John Jennings is an Eisner-award winning graphic novelist, illustrator, and curator who recently launched the imprint Megascope, dedicated to giving voice to comic creators and artists of color. Nalo Hopkinson is a celebrated science fiction and fantasy novelist and was selected by Neil Gaiman to help reboot his iconic Sandman Universe. You’ll have the rare opportunity to mingle with these influential comic creators, getting the inside scoop on their creative process and the comics industry. Includes lunch plus $500 toward the purchase of 2021 San Diego Comic-Con passes.
Join UCR alumna Nwaka Onwusa ’09, curator and director of curatorial affairs at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, for an exclusive guided tour of this legendary venue. Can’t make it to Cleveland any time soon? Southern California residents also have the option to join Nwaka for an equally fascinating visit at The Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles. Museum tickets and lunch for two also included…feed your mind, body, and musical soul.
Immerse yourself in a mind-expanding afternoon at the Palm Springs Art Museum with UCR professor Jim Isermann as he guides you on a private tour of his latest exhibition: Copy. Pattern. Repeat. An internationally recognized artist known for his bold, decorative, geometric works, Jim has designed numerous sculptures and architectural installations throughout and beyond Southern California. Enjoy the art of conversation over lunch with one of UCR’s most innovative minds.
Receive a $599 gift card good for one year at The Barn, UCR’s iconic campus eatery and music venue. Enjoy the very best of Highlander hospitality, while sampling our signature citrus-infused menu items, catching a concert with friends, relaxing on our beautifully renovated new patio, and reliving old memories while making new ones. (This VIP experience will be available for up to three of the winners.)
* Note: All VIP experiences exclude travel and other incidentals.