ARC offering 'Two tickets to Paradise' in fundraiser

ALBANY, Ga. -- Hoping to drum up financial support for it's unique preschool education program, the Albany Advocacy Resource Center is raffling off a pair of tickets to northern California wine country.

The drawing on May 2 will cap an evening downtown at the Nelson Tift building in which supporters can enjoy dinner and a silent auction to benefit ARC.

"We feel it's a win/win," ARC Marketing Director Eddie McCarty says. "We'll be able to generate funds for an awesome cause in our preschool program and send someone on a fabulous getaway. You can't beat it."

The tickets for the trip start at $75 and include dinner, two drink tickets, the silent auction and one chance for for the "Two tickets to Paradise," which will include two round-trip tickets to California, a two-night stay in San Francisco and two nights in Sonoma. The trip includes two vineyard tours.

For $100, patrons receive dinner, two drink tickets, access to the silent auction and a special wine tasting from 6 to 7 p.m. and one chance at the trip.

For those who are on a tighter budget but still want to support ARC and have a night out, McCarty says $25 "Coach" tickets are available that include dinner, two drink tickets and access to the silent auction.

"We understand that people have budgets that they need to stick to so we've created this tiered ticket option that we think can appeal to anyone regardless of their financial situation," Laura Calhoun, ARC's Development Director, says.

The benefactor of the fundraiser, ARC's preschool program, helps provide a specialized learning environment for children with developmental issues but also provides a structured environment for children without challenges.

"We believe that you have to have a program for people with these types of challenges through the full spectrum of life," McCarty said. "That starts at infancy, which is often the most crucial time for people with developmental issues."

Calhoun says that people apply and are evaluated at no charge.

"Once there is an evaluation we can cater a specific type of program for the students based on what types of challenges they may have," Calhoun said.

To organize and operate a specialized preschool program is costly, which is why ARC is leaning on the generosity of the community with their fundraiser.

Sponsorships are available from area businesses ranging from $250 to a $3,500 level.

Tickets and sponsorships are available at both ARC offices, 2616 Pointe North Blvd. or 3005 Old Dawson Road and are also available online at albanyarc.org.