Grand prize winner Paula Courtney

Exclaiming, “I’ve never won anything before in my life,” MAI’s Grand Prize winner Paula Courtney has her friend — and loyal MAI customer — Jim Nicholas to thank for her $1,000 gift certificate.

When the drawing for $1,000 and $500 MAI gift certificates was held at the front of the store, Paula was visiting with a group of friends at the back. Luckily, Jim Nicholas heard her name called and hurried to find her in the crowded store before another ticket was drawn.

These Grand Prize gift certificates were highlights of some 40 prizes offered at MAI’s 5th Anniversary Open House on Wednesday evening, November 2. Dealers in Buildings 1 and 2 offered door prizes such as French artwork, an antique ebonized chair, sconces, champagne gift baskets, bread boards, and booth gift certificates. Deciding which prizes to take their chances on was hard work, so party-goers enjoyed tables offering wine and food pairings that were set up throughout the store. Champagne, Italian and domestic wines, ceviche, layered appetizers, shrimp ‘n’ grits, pralines, and more were enjoyed all evening.

Paula Courtney, owner of Courtney & Company located on Gaylord near MAI, added that her $1,000 gift certificate was much better than prizes her husband has won in the past … a monkey and a surfboard to name a few.