THE DREAM TEAM

Little Rock just became even more of a powerhouse in the medical field. Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences are teaming up to make the state a little safer for families.

The duo recently announced its newest project, the Ronald McDonald Family Room at UAMS, a 2,000-SF space providing families at UAMS with the same care RMHCA is known for. The area will serve families with both babies in the NICU and older children at home, in hopes of reducing the extreme stress of hospitalization.

Located on the same floor as the NICU, the Family Room will include sleeping rooms, a play area for siblings, laundry facilities, showers, living and dining areas and an open concept kitchen, providing parents the opportunity to step away from the intensity of the NICU for a moment and to care for their entire families in one place.

The Ronald McDonald Family Room at UAMS is slated to open in November and is currently accepting donations toward the project. For more information and to give, visit RMHCArkansas.org.

HOMEGROWN TALENT

Deanna Stanton, Zeek Wright

Attendees of this year’s Splash Winter Wine Taste hosted by Ballet Arkansas were buzzing about the choreographic talents of company dancers Deanna Stanton and Paul Tillman, two of the troupe’s 15 professional dancers.

The two had been selected by executive and artistic director Michael Fothergill to each create a unique world premiere to present at the event. Fothergill, an established choreographer, is passionate about nurturing the talent of up-and-coming choreographers.

“In the early stages of one’s choreographic career, it’s hard to get your foot in the door,” Fothergill says.

The success of both choreographers inspired Fothergill to program a new multi-year collaborative concert series titled “Debut,” which launches next November at the Argenta Community Theater and will include site-specific performances around the metro.

“The series will give our dancers the opportunity to create vibrant works for their peers and the freedom to collaborate with local musicians,” Fothergill says. “We will also commission the work of one established choreographer to compare and contrast the stages of choreographic development.”

Ballet Arkansas just may have the next “it” choreographer in the professional company ranks, and they certainly don’t want to deprive audiences of their talents.

“Expect to see exciting promotions, partnerships and special events tied to ‘Debut,’” Fothergill adds. “It’s going to be a fun program.”

BIG MOVES

  • Dr. Dionne Jackson took over as executive director of AR Kids Read, succeeding Charlie Conklin who retired from the role held since its founding in 2012.
  • The ALS Association recently added J. Thomas “Tommy” May to its national board of trustees.
  • The Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation announced Chris Collier as its new executive director in Little Rock.

SAVE THE DATE

Taste of the Finest
Aug. 19

Bring your appetite. This Cystic Fibrosis Foundation bash is known for its delectable eats.


Dancing With Our Stars
Sept. 5

Local stars dazzle on the dancefloor at this annual gala for the Children’s Tumor Foundation.


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