Sunshine School and Development Center supporters gathered for the group's Sunshine Gala on April 30 at Heroncrest in Springdale.
Organizers say the fundraiser yielded more than $400,000, "which makes it possible for us to enable those people touched by disability, so they have the support they need to reach their full potential."
The school launched its Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) program in May 2021 that "allows us to serve children with autism in a 1-to-1 setting, using evidence-based practices to develop socially significant behaviors, which help them gain independence and generalize skills in their homes and communities," says Jarrod Reeves, CEO.
Mallory and Scott Fitzpatrick, parents of twins Carson and Luke, shared with those gathered their experiences with Sunshine School and the impact of services, including ABA, on their family.
Seth Malley, Venessa Yates and Will McDonald served as honorary chairmen of the benefit presented by Jack Link's.
The Sunshine Gala committee included Kluane Billings, Rochelle Dalton, Sarah Young, Alex Treat, Lori Walker, Erica Preston, Krista Khone, Courtney Guppy, Amy Koch and Wendy Williamson.
The annual Jones Center Sassafras Wine Dinner returned as an in-person event May 5 for the first time since 2019. Highlights of the evening at Sassafras Springs Vineyard and Winery in Springdale included a four-course dinner presented by Chef Case Dighero of Edible Culture, with Derek Kilpatrick of Sassafras Springs walking guests through wine pairings with each meal.
Terri Trotter, Jones Center CEO; Scott Jordan of Civitas Inc., a Denver-based landscape architecture firm; and Marlon Blackwell of Marlon Blackwell Architects in Fayetteville provided guests with insights into the progress of plans for the campus transformation with a glimpse of the latest renderings of the center's 54-acre Campus Vision Plan and future programming.
The Jones Trust in Springdale was awarded a Design Excellence Grant by the Walton Family Foundation in the fall of 2020 and Chief Advancement Officer Kelly Kemp-McLintock, CFRE, tells me: "The Design Excellence Grant has allowed The Jones Trust Board and leadership staff to re-imagine the campus to better connect it to the downtown Springdale revitalization master plan and the spine of the Razorback Greenway trails system. We are grateful for this important support from the Walton Family Foundation. The new campus vision, when complete, will help keep The Jones Center a relevant, treasured destination for all in Northwest Arkansas." She adds that the design excellence grant is now officially in phase II and the board is expected to vote on the final campus plan early this fall.
Melody and Jon Richard served as chairmen, with Cheryl and Gene Long as hosts of the event whose signature sponsor was Spectrum Brands.
For more event photos -- nwadg.com/photos/society.
Columnist Carin Schoppmeyer can be reached by email at email@example.com.