'Swing into Spring' Raises More Than $63,000 for MLK Center
A sell-out crowd of 300 guests packed the Atlantic Beach Club and Pavilion on Thursday, March 29, to celebrate the 16th annual Swing into Spring fundraiser benefitting the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center. The evening raised over $63,000 to support the Center’s core programs and services.
Board of Trustees President Whitney C. Slade welcomed guests, saying, "We are deeply grateful to our generous sponsors and donors and dedicated team of staff and volunteers who worked tirelessly to create a fabulous event.”
Executive Director Marilyn Warren described the Center’s vital programs and the need for ongoing support to continue this essential work. Participants from the Center’s education, hunger and Strong Woman community programming spoke movingly about their life experiences and how the Center makes a difference in their lives.
Guests bid on items donated by local business in the Silent Auction before enjoying a buffet dinner. Many of the dozens of individual Easter Baskets available for sale were donated back to the Center to distribute to children in its programs. Local luminaries Emlen and Liz Drayton served as the evening’s emcees and presided over the spirited Fund-A-Need and Live Auction. The evening concluded with dancing to R&B and Funk favorite Wayz and Means.
“Swing into Spring really is a community celebration,” said Warren. “Besides being loads of fun, the evening is filled with wonderful surprises, like the generous pair of donors who were high bidders on a Live Auction item – a year’s worth of pizza! – and then donated that item back to the Center for us to use in the children’s programs. That’s the kind of generous spirit that makes Swing into Spring, and the MLK Community Center, so special.”
“The funds we raised will help feed hundreds of Newport County families in our Food Pantry and allow dozens of children to attend our literacy-based Summer Adventure Camp and so much more“ she continued. “By giving to the MLK Community Center, our donors make a difference in their own backyard.”