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Recommitment Celebration


The Northwest Arkansas MLK Council hosted its 27th Annual Recommitment Celebration on Jan.14 with the theme Disruptive Love: The Foundation of the Beloved Community at the Fayetteville Public Library. More than 700 guests enjoyed a fireside chat with Dr. Cornel West that was moderated by Emma Willis. Guests also enjoyed entertainment from the Philander Smith College Choir, the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas, Maranda Seawood, Anthony Ball, Reggie James, Hozie Thomas and NaTosha DeVon. A record $31,000 was allocated to 31 students who were recognized for their efforts in education at the celebration. The “Salute to Greatness” Award recipients included Helena Gadison with the Ernestine White-Gibson Individual Achievement Award; Lorie Huff with the Dr. John L Colbert Lifetime Achievement Award; Michael Day with the Rodney Momon Young Adult Award; John Newman with the Rev. J.A. Hawkins Posthumous Award and the Squire Jehagen Outreach Center with the Organization of Year Award. Throughout the Northwest Arkansas community, the Northwest Arkansas MLK Council’s purpose is to promote awareness, education and advocacy. Select photos by Ryan Versey

Moonlight Masquerade


The Junior League of Northwest Arkansas hosted the 11th annual Moonlight Masquerade on Feb. 3 at Heroncrest Event Center in Elm Springs. More than 250 tickets, including corporate and individual tables and individual tickets, were sold. The event included a silent auction, music by DJ Derrick and delicious samplings from an assortment of local food trucks. Nancy Gaden, accounting and human resources director of NWA Women’s Shelter, spoke about national statistics on domestic violence as well as how the league has partnered with the shelter to provide departure packs for residence leaving the shelter, volunteer hours, and financial support for services and resources. Emily Rappé Fisher, developmental director of Children’s Safety Center of Washington County, spoke about the league partnering with immediate needs of clients through programs aimed at providing comfort for those leaving homes in a hurry, room essentials, and financial support for services, resources, and their new building. The event raised $40,000 to go toward the league’s mission and to fund programs with its partner agencies.

Soup Sunday


On Feb. 5, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families hosted its annual Soup Sunday at Rogers Convention Center. Approximately 1,000 guests and volunteers circulated the ballroom sampling more than 20 kinds of soups, breads and sweets from local restaurants and vendors. Guest also enjoyed live music by The Cocktail Club, Kid Zone activities led by the Ozark Ballet Theaterm, illusionist Herb Hodde, who also made fabulous animal balloons, and music by Troy Schremmer, a local music educator. The event featured a Golden Ladle Award, which was awarded by judges Judy Tatios, Joseph Nguyen, Jaclyn House and Alex Golden, as well as a People’s Choice Award, where guests voted for their favorite soup. The Golden Ladle Award and the People’s Choice Award both went to Atlas with butternut squash soup with coconut, cardamom and candied pepitas. Through ticket sales, donations and a silent auction, the event raised more than $195,000 to benefit the organization.

Ooh! La, La!, a Chocolate and Wine Pairing Dinner 


On Feb. 9, the Jackson L. Graves Foundation hosted its 14th Annual Ooh! La, La!, a chocolate and wine pairing event, at Fayetteville Public Library. The event kicked off with a champagne reception, featuring artisan chocolate samplings from Terroir by Onyx, followed by a decadent, three-course dinner prepared by Chef Justus Moll with chocolate infused in every course. Each dish was paired with a fine wine presented by Phillip Price of Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. Approximately 125 guests helped in raising more than $30,000 benefiting the Jackson L. Graves Foundation’s projects.  

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