Puppies, spelling bees and mac 'n' cheese are all in this month's snapshot of the news worth noting in Little Rock nonprofits.

BLESSED BY THE FEST

It’s safe to say there’s no short supply of festivals in Little Rock. From cornbread to crafts and every food group in between, if you love it, chances are there’s a day devoted to it in our city.

And although we love a good block party as much as the next person, the best part — hands down — is that so many of our festivals are designed to give back to local nonprofits.

Hillcrest HarvestFest brought food trucks, vendor booths, even a dog show to the neighborhood, but the 2018 event also brought in more than $13,000 for The Allen School, which works with special-needs children to prepare them and their parents for kindergarten.

“The Allen School holds a special place in the hearts of the HarvestFest committee,” committee chair Steve Shuler says. “The work that the school has done is vital. Children and parents leaving The Allen School are prepared to face the challenge of school life in a way that would have been impossible otherwise. It is our deepest honor to play a small part in The Allen School’s mission.”

But the fest fun doesn’t stop there. The Mac-N-Cheez Mania Food Festival recently announced its return to the event scene on April 6 at War Memorial Stadium.

Hosted by Pulaski Heights United Methodist Church, the fest will pit homestyle and professional chefs against one another to compete for top tasting honors, yet once again the highlight is the cause. The relaunched event will benefit a different category of nonprofits each year, with 2019 proceeds going to five local organizations helping our homeless neighbors in need.

Bring on the goodness, 2019.

TURNING POINTE TAKES FLIGHT

Ballet Arkansas’ eighth annual Turning Pointe Gala is a fresh take on the traditional fundraiser. Set at Dassault Falcon Jet’s newest space, hangar 14, the March 30 event will feature cuisine, live music by The Dizzy 7, an eclectic array of auction items for every taste and, of course, a whole lot of dancing.

“The hangar is going to be an exciting location for the evening,” says Michael Fothergill, the ballet’s executive and artistic director. “It’s not your run-of-the-mill gala, it’s fresh, bold and innovative, much like the vision we have for the company.”

A series of performances featuring a diverse repertory will be scattered throughout the evening, including a piece by company dancer and up-and-coming choreographer Deanna Stanton. Parker Audi, a longtime supporter of the troupe, is presenting the evening, which is black-tie-optional for the first time in the organization’s history.

“You only turn 40 once, so we’ve got a lot of celebrating to do!” Fothergill says. “The gala is the perfect time to look to the future and to toast to the next 40 years.”

Support Ballet Arkansas, a pillar of the arts community, and get your tickets today at BalletArkansas.org.

BIG MOVES

The University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College Foundation recently named Ashley Welch Hudson its new chairman of the foundation’s board of directors.


The Women’s Foundation of Arkansas added three new members to its board of directors: Katherine Berry, Yolanda Hughes and Kim Lane.

SAVE THE DATE

Spellebration
April 11

Now in its second year, this spelling bee for grownups will test your A-B-C prowess while raising funds for AR Kids Read literacy interventions.


Paws on the Runway
May 2

Couture has never been so cute. Humans and canines alike will hit the runway modeling the latest looks at this annual CARE for Animals fashion show.


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