Happy Hour for Happy Kids helps Childcare Resources

VERO BEACH — What do you get when you combine a love of shoes, friendly get-togethers and an appreciation for the work being done by non-profit organizations?  The answer for Gail Lulley, Heidi Hartline and Maggie Creelman was High Healin’, periodic social gatherings to raise money for local charities.

An enthusiastic group of women got together Thursday evening at STAX for a second High Healin’ fundraiser and, while the original stiletto-idea appeared to give way to more comfortable footwear, the Happy Hour for Happy Kids theme was taken to heart. “We can eat out anywhere, anytime, but this helps to support women and children oriented charities,” said Hartline.

“I love the idea that it also helps local businesses,” added Kim Willson.

At last month’s High Healin’ at Costa d’Este, the group raised money for the Women’s Refuge to help in their efforts to meet a Johns Island Foundation matching grant.

The beneficiary this time was the Childcare Resources Education Center which opened its doors in September.  The delightful new facility on the campus of Trinity Episcopal Church is the first childcare center actually managed by Childcare Resources.  In addition to that center’s 53 babies and preschoolers, CCR contracts with quality providers throughout the county, to afford care to 43 additional children of working families.

During a brief program, Pam King, CCR Executive Director spoke about the importance of early education, so that children are not at a disadvantage when they are old enough to attend school.

“It is cheaper to prevent a problem than to correct one later,” said King.  “By providing quality child care early, they are ready when they begin school.”

Dede Snipes, a personal trainer at the Jungle Club, demonstrated a few foot tips for overworked and underappreciated appendages.  There were some skeptical looks and not a lot of takers for her standing on golf balls exercise, but a number of women did tuck the Pilates-based exercise handouts she distributed into purses to try a little tootsie TLC at home.

As the ladies mingled they enjoyed the light jazzy sounds of The Jacks and sipped on tempting concoctions such as the Stiletto Martini, “Lush”ious Louis, Coco Couture and Manolo Mimosa.

“STAX has been just wonderful to us; they’re giving us hors d’oeuvres and they’ve created special drinks for the event,” said Creelman.

The evening wouldn’t have been complete without a Best in Shoe competition; which in this case was a red carpet High Heels’ walk-off.

Ten ladies competed on the runway, judged by STAX Chef Jim Faraco, Sarah Starr, CCR Community Relations Director, and Heidi Hartline.  Best in Shoe winner, sporting a pair of stylish black and white striped stilettos, was Kim Willson.

Plans are being formulated for another High Healin’ gathering in January; stay tuned. {igallery 279}

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