© Photo by Dana Driensky
Source: S.M. Wright Foundation | 11/22/16 | Dallas
On Saturday, December 17th thousands of southern Dallas families will gather at the Fair Park Automobile Building for the 18th Annual Christmas in the Park. A record 44,336 people were served in 2015 with basic necessities like clothes and food while others found toys, bikes and more to help make a child’s Christmas wish come true.
Joining S. M. Wright II, co-founder, President and CEO of the S. M. Wright Foundation will be his mother, co-founder Debra D. Wright and his brother, co-founder The Reverend Calvin Wright, along with many of Dallas’ business and community leaders.
One of the highlights is Coats for Kids, which is a program created by Maddy McGuire, a Highland Park High School (HPHS) student. She has been participating with her parents, Natalie and Mike, along with her sister Sophie in Christmas in the Park since she was three years old, making this her 14th year to volunteer. She also founded the S. M. Wright Club at HPHS and along with approximately 50 volunteers, seek donations of new warm coats all year long to give hope and happiness to kids in desperate need. In 2015 3,000 new coats were gifted at Christmas in the Park. The club also presented a check to S. M. Wright II in the amount of $19,240 raised from donations to benefit the foundation. Funds raised by the club purchase new Coats for Kids through Burlington Coat Factory’s community program and HPHS awards service hours for students.
Ray Washburne, President and Managing Director, Highland Park Village and co-founder of MCrowd Restaurant Group, and his wife, Heather, Honorary Chairs, will be joined by Nita and Cullum Clark, Chairman of the Board at the S.M. Wright Foundation and their children, co-chairs and the host committee. 2016 co-chairs are Allie Beth and Pierce Allman, Gina and Ken Betts, Julie and Darren Blanton, Deni and Kevin Bryant, Doug Deason, Ola and Randall Fojtasek, Heather and Todd Furniss, Suzanne Bock Grishman and Michael Grishman, Brooke and Jeff Jackson, Natalie and Mike McGuire, Lisa and Jeff Rachor, Michael Watson, Carrie and John Willding.
Host committee members are Lori and John Alschuler. Susan and Ernest Beecherl, Kathy and Harlan Crow, Michelle and Jason Fraser, Suzanne Bock Grishman and Michael Grishman, Tony Hartl, Mack Hick, Luann Hicks, Chris Lalonde, Larry North.
All of these supporters and their families have long-time traditions of volunteering to disburse toys, food, other necessities and help with managing the event. Over 1,800 volunteers will join to share the holiday season with their families.
Run by the S.M. Wright Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit organization providing support and stability to inner-city underprivileged children and less fortunate families in the South Dallas/Fair Park community, Christmas in the Park has grown from serving less than 200 underprivileged kids in 1998 to over 44,000 residents. The foundation also provides hunger relief, educational support, health, social service assistance and economic empowerment. The foundation’s goals are to move these families from a position of dependency to self-sufficiency and to restore stability to families and the community.
For more information on Christmas in the Park and the S. M. Wright Foundation and how you, your corporation and business can become involved, visit the website at: