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United Way gala a success

By submitted, 11/8/22 10:19 AM

HOPE – The United Way of Hempstead County held its 1st annual fundraising gala on Thursday, October 27, 2022, at the Hope Country Club. “We really wanted to bring awareness to more local residents regarding United Way and the work we do in our area,” said Gina Perkins, United Way of Hempstead County Executive Director.

The first annual red carpet event was designed to spotlight the important community agencies supported by the local United Way, including: Christian Charitable Medical Clinic, First Choice Pregnancy Resource Center of Hope, Hope in Action 1 & 2, Hempstead County 4-H, Junior Auxiliary of Hope, Senior Adult Center, Domestic Violence Prevention, Hope for Paws, and Harvest Regional Food Bank.

More than 200 people were in attendance for the gala which featured catering courtesy of Sheba’s Family Restaurant in Hope; wine courtesy of Bodiddle’s in Benton, AR; entertainment from the Shadow Singers which was local take on the “Masked Singer;” silent auction items including Touchdown Club tickets from David Bazzel, a live event painting, and a priceless garnet jewelry set; an exclusive $2,500 raffle drawing from Hourglass Aesthetics and Wellness Center; an interactive photo booth from Smile on the Line; and the Red Carpet Raffle where guests bid through ticket purchases and won prizes ranging from Arkansas Travelers tickets to a custom hunting knife to diamond earrings and designer handbags to a 55” TV and so much more.

The evening featured an award ceremony where Michael Winarta from New Millennium Building Systems in Hope was named “Person of the Year,” Paul Henley was awarded the inaugural “Paul Henley Volunteer of the Year Award” for his 50+ years of service to our community, and the Christian Charitable Medical Clinic was named the “Agency of the Year.” “Being able to shine a light on where our contributions go was an important part of this event,” said Perkins. “ These organizations help so many people and it’s a special way to thank those volunteers who put in the work each day.”

“It really does take a village to create a special night like this one,” said Amanda Lance, gala chair. “ The committee of ladies and gentlemen who brought this to life put in countless hours to highlight the importance of the United Way in Hempstead County, and simultaneously create a memorable event that people will look forward to year after year.”

The event raised almost $20,000 through generous sponsorships from more than 45 businesses and individuals.

Chairs and co-chairs: Gina Perkins, Amanda Lance, Alejandra Mendoza, Bren Yocom, Dillan Kelsey, Shelly Short, Summer Powell, Suzie Barham, Sheardon Pearce, Wendy Jones, Jennifer Cunningham, Tanya Alvarado, Lindsey Honea, Lindsey Townsend, Linsey Kirkpatrick, Jennifer Block. Committee members: Allison Sitzes, Angelica Manzanares, Anna Powell, Arnetta Bradford, Ashley Martinez, Charlotte Bradley, Christine Holt, Christy Burns, Holli Boyette, Janet Choate, Jason Campbell, Kim Hollis, Kyla Hamilton, Lili Rogel, Megan Lance.

For any questions about the 1st Annual United Way of Hempstead County Gala, please contact Amanda Lance at UWCHgala@gmail.com or 870-703-3074; and for information about the important work being done through United Way of Hempstead County, please contact Gina Perkins, Executive Director at Gina.Perkins@swaec.org.