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Monday, October 14, 2013 - 7:04pm
Las Cruces — Thanks to a 50-50 drawing at its annual program dinner October 6, 2013 at the Las Cruces Convention Center, the 2013 Dress the Child program raised enough money to buy new clothes and shoes for more than 500 economically disadvantaged children in Doña Ana County — a new record.
The 50-50 drawing raised almost $2,000 at the dinner, and all of it will go to benefit the program, because the winner of the drawing donated her winnings back to Dress the Child. That, coupled with a $2,000 donation from Anna Lyles of the Las Cruces Maze (which hosted the first ever Dress the Child Croquet Tournament in September) pushed the total raised over the $50,000 mark, which will provide clothing and shoes for 500-plus children who will be selected to participate in the program by Las Cruces Public Schools and the Gadsden Independent School District.
"Thanks to our contributors to the Dress the Child dinner, the incredible talents of our participating chefs, and the generosity of the dinner patrons, we will reach our goal of ‘dressing’ 500 children this year. But with the needs of our area children increasing, we hope donations will continue coming in and we can buy clothing for 550 kids," said Dress the Child co-chair Doug Boberg.
There is still time to donate before Dress the Child volunteers take the children shopping: November 3 at Old Navy; November 17 at Sears; and December 8 at Kohl’s. $100 will be spent on each participating child. With the support of participating merchants, each child will actually receive $115-$150 in new clothes and shoes, said Boberg. Volunteers are still needed to assist children with shopping.
This year’s dinner was catered by eight local chefs. All the food and labor for the dinner, as well as the use of the convention center, was donated. One hundred percent of the money raised by the dinner (a record $16,531) will go to buy clothes and shoes for participating students. Students from culinary arts programs at Centennial and Oñate high school served the dinner, while students from the NMSU Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management program served the wine, which was donated by St. Clair Winery and Bistro. Double Eagle Restaurant donated champagne for the event. Bread was donated by Zeffiro’s Restaurant. Table linens were donated by American Linen and Uniform Supply Co. and the design and printing of the dinner menu was donated by Del Valle Design and Imaging.
The MST Jazz Trio provided the evening’s musical entertainment. The dinner coordinator was Felipe Garcia of the Las Cruces Convention Center.
Participating chefs were Darrel Smith, executive chef at Picacho Hills Country Club; Gabriel Hernandez, executive chef at Good Samaritan Society/Morrison Senior Living; Alfredo Vargas, executive chef at De La Vegas Pecan Grill; Tatsu Miyazaki, executive chef and owner of Savoy de Mesilla and Aqua Reef; Felipe Chavez, executive chef at Ramada Palms Hotel and Conference Center; Tom Agius, executive chef at the Las Cruces Convention Center (the event’s host chef); and Clint Kifolo, executive chef at Sodexo and NMSU/Flavours Catering/Third Floor Bistro.
The Dress the Child program, which is sponsored by the Rio Grande Rotary Foundation (RGRF) of Las Cruces, began in 1984 by providing clothing to 15 needy children. In 2012, more than 430 children from Las Cruces Public Schools and the Gadsden Independent School District received clothing.
“Getting to select and take home new clothing and shoes is such a wonderful experience for children. Seeing the children’s smiles is such a wonderful sight. Dress the Child is a blessing to so many of our students,” said LCPS Lead Social Worker Yoli Silva.
A cash donation in any amount can be made to the Dress the Child Program, c/o the Las Cruces Rio Grande Rotary Foundation. Mail it to ATTN: Loren Kuehne, 3265 Arrowhead Road, Suite 200, Las Cruces, NM 88011.
For more information, call Dress the Child Co-Chairs Doug Boberg at 575.644.9469 or Matt Holt at 993.2331; or send an email to email@example.com. Visit http://dressthechild.weebly.com/how-you-can-help.html.