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Gala Girl

Events impresaria Linda Young will make you want to dance till dawn.

For Linda Young, Segerstrom Center is a canvas for her creations.

Linda Young is a soirée savant. You’ll see her experience and expertise firsthand if you’re one of the fortunate 400 who gets a coveted seat at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts’ annual Candlelight Concert benefit, set for Dec. 7. One of the most sought-after invites of the season, the event will celebrate the world-class dance, orchestra, Broadway, jazz and cabaret performances that the venue brings to Orange County. Young and her team will transform the center from box office to backstage, creating a magical environment that transports guests with unique interactive entertainment, unusual culinary experiences, breathtaking decor and other surprises that we’re not at liberty to reveal. For guests, it will be magical. For Young, president and managing partner of Newport Beach-based Elite OC Productions, it’s all in a day’s work.

Young founded the event management firm in 2007 and quickly forged a reputation as the go-to gala guru for corporations and nonprofit organizations throughout the county. Her high-profile charitable clients include Court Appointed Special Advocates (also known as CASA, whose annual luncheon and fashion show also is scheduled for Dec. 7; a busy day for Young), the Assistance League of Saddleback Valley, Rivals United for a Kure and UCI Mind Institute.

So, needless to say this is a gal with party planning advice to spare. Such as? Well, for starters, she says it’s now acceptable to send Evites instead of printed invitations. And dare to be different. Go with offbeat themes, unique entertainment and fun color palettes, meaning it’s OK to dump the green and red this month.

“Consider bright yellow mixed with white and black,” says Young. “Think big, with big bands, big props, big ornaments.”

Young’s Hots
Friday dinners at Great Maple, Wildflower Linen, the O.C. Market Place swap meet

Young’s Nots

Human tables, magicians, bad auctioneers, food trucks