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Super Bowl tickets at Starry Night

The National Ability Center (NAC) has helped countless people with disabilities over the last 21 years. Without such help, many people may not have received the assistance to regain their lives.

Two years ago, the NAC conducted roughly 17,000 lessons and programs for disabled veterans and civilians that focused on providing outdoor sports and recreation. Last year, that number increased dramatically.

"We had over 26,000 lessons last year in our programs, said Meeche White, executive director of the NAC. We had 17,000 the year before, that’s a huge growth."

The programs are cheap and scholarships are made available to anyone that asks. Fundraisers are key anchors to continuing similar programs.

On Sept. 23, the NAC will present its 14th "Hamlet Companies’ A Starry Night" fundraiser at the Grand Summit Resort Hotel at The Canyons at 6 p.m. A year ago, more than 450 people attended the event and it raised over $250,000. Individual tickets start at $200. Table packages are also offered and will sell-out fast There are seats still available but, White said, they are filling up."

"I think if we can make $250,000 again we’ll be quite pleased. The proceeds benefit so many people," White said.

Brooke Hafets, outreach manager for NAC, cannot see any other way to benefit these people.

"All the profits go directly to support the programs and the people with disabilities," Hafets said. "We do charge a small program fee but it only covers about 15 percent (of the real costs). These fundraisers help to make up for 85 percent of the cost of lessons."

The basic format will stay the same.

"Starry Night has kept on a similar schedule for many years because it’s been so successful," Hafets said.

There are some changes coming, however. There won’t be as many speakers, White said, so that the event flows more quickly. According to White, Paralympics gold medalist Stephanie Victor, who learned how to ski at the NAC, will be the only speaker.

"Each event is unique in its own way," Hafets said, "Different items we put on make it unique and special each year, there are a lot of items this year, (people) will have a new experience and have something to look forward to."

White also is excited about the different highlights to this year’s fundraiser.

"The auction is real different," White said, adding that there will be a Ted Ligety gold medal bib for auction along with Superbowl tickets to Miami. "It’s a great event, our mission shines through and people feel real good about what we do. It feels good to be there."

Kurt Bestor, who has a daughter with spina bifida, will be the master of ceremonies. Teresa Eggertson will lead the NAC Special Stars, a singing group of young NAC participants.

There will also be an opportunity to sponsor a child at the event, according to Hafets. It is an event for new and long-time residents in the community.

"The event itself is really fun," Hafets said. "The atmosphere is great. The Grand Summit at The Canyons puts together a wonderful meal. People can meet members of the community and athletes and participants and be able to see what the NAC is all about.

"It’s a not-to-be-missed event for sure. It’s definitely a wonderful way for people to learn about the NAC and how to be involved with it and how they can be involved in community.

Hafets continued, "Most people will walk away thinking of the center and the lives that we change."

There will also be a cocktail hour and post party after the event, which Hafets said will contain "little deserts, snack items and cordials."

The event is sponsored by Key Bank, Mark Miller Subaru, Overstock.com, and Quarry Village at Pinebrook. The event will include an elegant dinner, both a silent and live auction, and a special performance from the NAC Special Stars. For more information, call 649-3991.

Auction items:

*San Francisco accommodations at the Handlery Hotel and a $1,000 Nordstrom shopping spree.

*An elegant wine collection. 16 full-bodied and delicate reds, crisp and fruity whites — both domestic and imported varieties.

*Ted Ligety’s Olympic Bib

* A trip to London. The trip will also include a visit into Beatles’ history with a private tour of Abbey Road Studios. Two Beatles’ records make the package complete

*A trip to Mexico. A week-long get-away to Mazatlan. The trip includes airfare for two and hotel accommodations for up to two adults and two children.

*Ski Day for Two with Picabo. Four hours on the slopes with local Olympian Picabo Street. The day will include two gold ski passes, personal chatting time with Street over lunch and two autographed helmets to commemorate the event.

*Starry Night artwork by Park City artist, Doug Braithwaite created specifically for and in honor of A Starry Night.

*Super Bowl XLI in Miami. Winners will receive two tickets to the biggest football game of the year as well as airfare and two-night hotel accommodations.

*Rolling on the River. A rafting trip down the Salmon River. The five-day, four-night vacation is fully catered and all-inclusive.


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