Be The Special Valentine For A Child In Need Of Encouragement

The flowers are ordered. The champagne dinner reservations are locked down with a special bling-bling for dessert. The Kate Weiser chocolates are gift wrapped. You’re all set for Valentine’s Day 2018 and feeling pretty proud of yourself. Rightly so.

But there’s just one more thing that you could do to make it a home run — send a Valentine’s Day card to a stranger. It’s free. Why, it won’t even cost you the price of a stamp!

Children’s Health Valentine’s Day card*

Children’s Health Valentine’s Day card*

Children’s Health Valentine’s Day card*

Thanks to the folks at Children’s Medical Center Foundation, they’ve created three Valentine’s Day cards all ready to be delivered to their Children’s Health munchkin patients. All they need is you to pick which card and personalize it with “a note of encouragement.”

Here’s the link to your chance to be a love-bug hero/ine.

JUST IN: National Eye Institute Awards $2.7M+ For The Retina Foundation Of The Southwest’s Eileen Birch’s Work In Amblyopia

The Retina Foundation of the Southwest is probably being overloaded with notes of congratulations. Thanks to the efforts of Crystal Charity Ball Pediatric Vision Laboratory Scientific Director Eileen Birch, the National Eye Institute has awarded a five-year grant of $2,751,645 “for her cutting-edge research projects aimed at helping infants and children with lazy eye (amblyopia).”Eileen Birch*

Having earned her Ph.D. from the University of California in 1979, Eileen was granted a fellowship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1980-1982. Following her fellowship, Eileen was hired by the Foundation and has “dedicated her life to conducting sight-saving research at the Retina Foundation of the Southwest,” a nonprofit eye research institute dedicated to preventing vision loss and restoring sight through innovative research and treatment.

According to the Foundation, “Lazy eye is reduced vision in one eye, affecting one to two children in every classroom. It is one of the most serious and most common threats to a child’s vision.”

Texas Scottish Rite Hospital For Children’s Amputee Ski Trippers Geared Up At St. Bernard’s With Tony Herring Smiling And Ruthie Chilling On The Floor

For the usual Sunday Breadwinners brunch crowd in Inwood Village, the parking lot on Sunday, January 21, seemed a little more crowded than usual. The reason was that St. Bernard’s across the way had opened earlier than its usual Sunday noontime start.

The reason was the gathering of Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children’s patients who would be on the slopes of Winter Park at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in February for the 36th annual Amputee Ski Trip. They were at the ski-friendly store to get fitted for gear.

Crutches

Ruthie

The scene inside the store was like a pre-Christmas holiday party. Crutches were quickly stowed so kids could settle on the floor to cuddle with Ruthie, the laid-back St. Bernard mascot.

Across the way, a white-haired fella with a camera was capturing the activity. He could have easily been mistaken for one of the 14 youngsters’ grandfather. But actually he was TSRHC Chief of Staff Emeritus Dr. Tony Herring, the father of the annual ski trek. It was 37 years ago that Tony had started the TSRHC Amputee Ski Trip after hearing about a Denver program for youngsters with orthopedic challenges to head to the mountains for skiing and snowboarding.

Tony Herring

Over the years, Tony had sent off dozens and dozens of kids who had faced the loss of limbs to do more than just learn the art of skiing and snowboarding in Colorado. It was also an opportunity for the youngsters to be with others who have gone through surgeries, therapies and the emotional adjustment to being a bionic. To Tony’s delight the kids have returned with a sense of great self-esteem.

Cody McCasland and Tony Herring

But being ever the professional, he couldn’t help but check out the newest gear for the amputee patients like rock star Cody McCasland, who was born without shinbones due to Sacral Agenesis resulting in the amputation of both legs at the knee. He got his first set of prosthetic legs at 17 months and, over the years, he’s proved to be an extraordinary athlete, as well as scoring appearances on “Oprah” and “Ellen.”

Ryanne Carr

In fitting the kids with their gear, one staffer asked second-timer Ryanne Carr what size sock she would like. She smiled and said she didn’t need them. The staffer looked a little baffled. Then she pointed out that her prosthetic legs weren’t in need of socks. It seems that the 14-year-old had lost both of her legs and part of her right arm due to being born with amniotic band syndrome. A St. Bernard staffer quickly responded asking if she had a sister or brother. The answer was “Yes!” The sibling got a nifty pair of socks. Like Cody, Ryanne has earned quite a reputation in overcoming her physical challenges. The former Junior Race Director for the Dallas White Rock Marathon admitted seven years ago that, “I like to swim; I like to bike; I like to climb trees; I like to build Legos; I like to ride horses.” Now, she’s added snowboarding to that list.

This year’s junket takes place on Monday, February 12, with TSRHC pediatric orthopedic surgeon Dr. Henry Ellis on board, as well as TSRHC Director of Prosthetics/double amputee Don Cummings and other staffers to advise on the type of equipment that would be needed. As Tony pointed out, the trip also provides an opportunity for the staff to better understand the challenges that their patients encounter outside the hospital.

The trip is free for the kids, thanks to the Stephen M. Seay Foundation, American Airlines and St. Bernard.

Children’s Medical Center Foundation Benefactors And Friends Are Shown Appreciation For Providing $44M In 2017

Christopher Durovich

Brent Christopher

While the Saints and the Vikings were battling for the NFL Division title in Minneapolis on the evening of Sunday, January 14, Children’s Health President/CEO Christopher Durovich and Children’s Medical Center Foundation’s Brent Christopher, John Mitchener and Bill Braem were thanking benefactors and friends at the Dallas Country Club for their support.

John Mitchener

Bill Braem

The fact that many had the next day off, thanks to Martin Luther King Jr. Day, allowed the 200 or so guests like Children’s First Lady Christina Durovich, Barbara and John Stuart, Carol Seay, Monica Egert Smith and Susan and Dave Scullins to leisurely enjoy the buffet in the grand ballroom.

Christina Durovich and Carol Seay

John and Barbara Stuart

As the Vikings battled en route to pulling off a last-second win, Foundation President Brent was looking very pleased for another reason. Having just completed his first full year in his position, he reported that $44M had been tallied, the third-highest amount in the Foundation’s history. That sweet number was only surpassed by a whopping $71M in 2015 and $55M in 2012.

Harper’s Bazaar‘s Avril Graham To Share Spring Fashion Trends At “2nd Annual Room To Grow” In NorthPark’s Neiman Marcus Courtyard

Kim Bannister (File photo)

Jamie Singer (File photo)

Andrea Weber (File photo0

Andrea Nayfa (File photo)

The lineup of nationally known types keeps growing for this spring’s fundraising. Room To Grow Co-Chairs Kim Bannister, Jamie Singer and Andrea Weber along with NorthPark Center Chair Andrea Nayfa have arranged to have Harper’s Bazaar Fashion And Beauty Editor Avril Graham to be on the agenda for the Dec My Room fundraiser.

Avril Graham*

Kimberly Schlegel Whitman (File photo)

Avril will be “presenting trending colors of spring fashion trends with NorthPark Ambassador Kim Schlegel Whitman at the luncheon on Wednesday, April 18. Following the seated luncheon and chat, guests will after-party it up on Neiman Marcus NorthPark’s Level Two.

Where is the luncheon going to take place? That’s what separates this lunch from the usual fare. The event will be held in the Neiman Marcus Courtyard, located between Neiman Marcus and the Eiseman Jewels entrance. Talk about a beautifully landscaped setting with its towering trees and artwork.

And speaking about the beauty of the environment, the timing couldn’t be better. It coincides with NorthPark’s Spring At The Park Home And Garden Show that runs from Friday, April 13 to Monday, April 23.

According to Dec My Room – Dallas Director Karen Michlewicz, “We are so grateful to NorthPark Center and to Neiman Marcus for partnering with us to host the second annual ‘Room to Grow’ luncheon and fashion presentation. We look forward to attendees enjoying the latest spring fashions in the beautiful courtyard setting at Neiman Marcus. Most importantly though, we are so appreciative of the community for not only supporting this event, but also recognizing the impact that it has on the children served by Dec My Room.”

If Dec My Room is new on your radar, it was actually established in 2007, when Houstonians Susan Plank and her daughter Kendall Plank learned that a friend’s son would be traveling from Austin to Texas Children’s Hospital for a bone marrow transplant. That was the good news. But the problem was the youngster’s stay would be three weeks away from family and friends. The mom-daughter wanted to do more than a nice floral arrangement or a visit, so their contacted the family to learn about his favorite things. After hitting Target, they had his hospital room “decked” out with University of Texas logo and other “stuff.” His reaction was amazement resulting in hugs for Susan and Kendall. That one act of kindness gave birth to “Dec My Room” for children staying in hospitals.

When “Dec My Room” arrived in Dallas a couple of year ago, the perfect spot for the “healing place for children who are being admitted into a hospital for a prolonged amount of time” was Children’s Medical Center. The very first year a half dozen rooms were decorated by volunteers.

It’s a great program to apply your creative juices, so why not volunteer? And don’t forget to get your tickets to the luncheon!

* Photo provided by Dec My Room - Dallas

 

Star 102.1 Personalities To Broadcast “Miracle Day Radiothon” Friday From Children’s Medical Center Dallas From 6 a.m. To 7 p.m.

Lacey Parker and Renee Parker (File photo)

Friday is going to be a bit warmer, but there’s still going to be a holiday chill in the air. That translates into the taste of hot chocolate at the desk and the aroma of homemade bread baking away. But what would be the ideal sound to go with all these senses of the holidays?

It’s “Miracle Day Radiothon”! Presented by Neighborhood Credit Union, iHeartRadio  Star 102.1’s Leigh Ann, Amanda Flores and Rick O’Bryan will be broadcasting from Children’s Medical Center Dallas. From 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., there will be patients like Kristin Alcaraz, Shantisa Anderson, Julissa Garcia, Sadie Granberry, Emmy Kaighan, Maddox Kindiger, Katie Kramer, Braden McCollum, Jacob Mowl, Samantha Raack, Makenna Rodolph, Sim Scott, Ace Shelton and Miguel Soto and their families telling memorable stories about their relationship with Children’s.

Tom Thumb’s Connie Yates (File photo)

In addition to reminding listeners of the true meaning of the holidays, the hope is that listeners will reach in their pockets to support program at Children’s Health, in partnership with Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) Hospitals. Donations can be made online or by calling 800.800.7277.

Factoid: Last year the Children’s Health system provided care for more than “278,000 unique patients at its hospitals, specialty centers and pediatric group practices. It is the second-busiest pediatric health system in the nation in terms of admissions and pediatric emergency department visits.”

Joining the effort to provide health care for children will sponsors Albertsons/Tom Thumb, Granite, AT and T, Cisco and The Residences at Rough Creek Lodge.

JUST IN: Candice Romo And Hollie Siglin To Co-Chair Children’s Cancer Fund’s “Celebrating 30 Sweet Years” Fashion Show

News just arrived about the Children’s Cancer Fund’s annual fundraiser gala. Hold on to your football helmets! In celebration of its 30th anniversary, the fashion show will have the theme “Celebrating 30 Sweet Years.”

Candice Romo*

Hollie Siglin*

And to make a really sweet deal, the co-chairs will be Candice Romo and her longtime buddy Hollie Siglin. In addition to both being moms, the gals are also partners in Hawk and Sloane.

To add some muscle to their team, they’ve drafted Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman as honorary co-chairs. Talk about star power!

Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman (File photo)

The ladies have already locked down the Hyatt Regency Dallas for Friday, April 27.

This anniversary already has all the signs of being a sweetheart of a fundraiser. Sponsorships are available now!

* Photos provided by Children's Cancer Fund

Treasure Street’s “Color Me Texan” Co-Chairs Niven Morgan And Shelby Wagner Were Bullish On Breaking Records

Before the longhorn steer set hoof on the grounds of Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for the annual Treasure Street fundraiser, the numbers were already boding “record breaker”on Thursday, October 19, with way more than 1,000 in attendance. Think 1,300 coming together to “Color Me Texan.”

Shelby Wagner and Niven Morgan

The bovine was the photo opp of the night with all types lining up for a selfie. However, the snap of Co-Chairs Niven Morgan and Shelby Wagner got stalled. Niven was searching the grounds for his presentations notes. In the meantime, Shelby looked picture perfect despite Niven’s claims that earlier in the day Shelby had been hauling hay for the event set up.

BTW, this wasn’t Niven and Shelby’s first involvement with Treasure Street. As Shelby put it, “Niven’s been supporting Texas Scottish Rite for years.”

Niven added, “We were just flattered that they asked us to chair Treasure Street.”

Greiner Arts Academy Middle School Mariachi band

The organizers were also smart. This year’s outdoor fundraiser took over the parking lot at the corner of Oak Lawn and Maple. Almost immediately upon leaving their cars, guests were greeted by the 18-piece Greiner Arts Academy Middle School Mariachi band.

Treasure Street hay bar

Following the path to the check-in, they discovered the steer and a micro-version of Cattle Baron’s Ball with food stations (Campisi’s, Haystack Burgers and Barley, Matt’s Rancho Martinez, Parigi and Paul Martin’s American Grill), a stage for Emerald City, towering bars made of bales of hay and tall tables and chairs. And on this night, there was no need for a tent. The sky was perfect.

Janice Provost

Pretty-in-pink Janice Provost womaned her Parigi station and reported that the previous weekend’s Dining On The Prairie Dinner Series for Trinity Audubon had been a grand success despite the challenges of limited facilities.

At 7:30 America’s Got Talent electric violinist Svet surprised the audience by performing.

As for the live auction, it lived up to the record-breaking feel of the night with the tennis package with John Isner going  for $12,500 and the John Lannom terrain-hunting buggies going for $45,000. The results? Thanks to the silent and live auction, the total haul of the night was more than $1.2M.

Gerry Fronterhouse and Annette Simmons and Kathy and Rodney Woods

Others in the crowd were Honorary Co-Chairs Ginny and Randy Bailey, Annette Simmons and Gerry Fronterhouse, Mark Edgar, Ann Davidson with Mark Porter, Carolyn and Karl Rathjen, Carol Seay, Sue and Jimmy Gragg, and Kathy and Rodney Woods.