BY STEFANI DIAS Californian assistant lifestyles editor firstname.lastname@example.org
It's harvest time for CASA of Kern County, which wraps its fundraising celebration parties for the year with It's All About the Arts! on Oct. 19.
"It's a really collaborative event, put on by past presidents of the board of directors," said Colleen McGauley, CASA executive director.
It's All About the Arts!
When: 6:30 p.m. Oct. 19
Where: Stockdale Country Club, 7001 Stockdale Highway
That list includes Sam Chow, Kate Tandy, Greg Heyart, Carla Musser and Linda Sullenger.
Taking place at Stockdale Country Club, McGauley said the fundraiser celebrates the various arts, starting with the culinary.
"We're going to have a champagne reception, followed by dinner. The chefs are working with Stockdale Country Club."
For the visual arts, Ukrainian artist Oleksiy Kovalenko and Claudia True, formerly of Bakersfield, will be on hand with some work for sale, with part of the proceeds benefitting the organization.
Also furthering the cause is a gift from Gene Tackett, husband of community activist Wendy Wayne, who died last year. He donated some of his wife's favorites to benefit CASA, McGauley said.
Like True, singer Jarrod McNaughton returns to his old stomping grounds for the event, although he might be better known for his former role as vice president of marketing and development for San Joaquin Community Hospital.
"He's flying back from Ohio.We have a little three-piece trio and there will be dancing."
Although there's more than a week until the fundraiser, McGauley said tickets are about three-quarters sold.
"We have 18 spots, and the event is maxing out at 60. People ask, 'Can I come and get a ticket at the door?' We usually say yes, but for this one that won't be the case."
After this season-ending event, CASA will return with parties starting Dec. 6 with a kick-off celebration recognizing its 20th anniversary.
Leading up to this arts event was a jam-packed fundraising weekend -- the third annual Wine Women and Shoes on Saturday and the Pumpkin Patch Extravaganza on Sunday -- that put the CASA crew to the test.
"We normally wouldn't have two fundraisers back to back, but the pumpkins were ready to go.
"We had about 90 people out at Valpredo Farms. There were kids from foster care group homes. Everyone had lunch. They had a magician, a hay maze -- it was just lovely."
McGauley was also pleased with the response to Saturday's wine event.
"It was fabulous. I don't know the dollar amount raised, but a large number of people joined our giving plan, Circle of Hope. Dignity Health was our huge sponsor. Our shoe guys was a who's who (in local medicine) -- Dr. Ravi Patel, Dr. (Vipul) Dev ... It was hilarious and was so much fun.
"We had a flash mob. I think it was American Kids. These little girls, 15 of them, they just started dancing. They got everyone involved."
At the event, guests received magnetic buttons stating "I'm all about hope" in a nod to CASA's mission to help find permanent homes for children in the system.
"We have an ability to plant a seed of hope, to give hope to one child in a situation. ... People had a fun time (this weekend) but felt like they were part of a bigger hopeful message.
"Even though the staff is bone tired, it was worth it."