Featured image: Event co-chairs and co-founders Don and Mari Epperson; Shellie Ross, Wesley-Rankin’s executive director; event co-chairs and co-founders Kay and Duncan Fulton.
It is every chairman’s dream to sell out a first-time event and that’s exactly what happened with the inaugural A Taste of West Dallas benefitting Wesley-Rankin Community Center, chaired by Mari and Don Epperson along with Kay and Duncan Fulton with Texas Capital Bank as presenting sponsor. The event brought in $106,000 to benefit Wesley-Rankin and their mission last fall.
Over 400 supporters gathered in World Master Chef Sharon Van Meter’s fabulous event veue 3015 at Trinity Groves recently to savor sips – beer, wine and tequila – and savory bites from these West Dallas chefs, restaurants and breweries: 3015 at Trinity Groves, Amberjax Fish Market Grille, Beto & Son at Trinity Groves, La Estrella Bakery, LUCK – Local Urban Craft Kitchen, Oak Highlands Brewery, Odom’s Bar-B-Que, Pura Vida Tequila, Saint Rocco’s New York Italian at Trinity Groves, Snappy Catfish, and Steam Theory Brewing Company.
Mari Epperson took the podium and welcomed the crowd, thanking the host committee and media sponsors The Park Cities News and My Sweet Charity. Co-chair Duncan Fulton introduced Shellie Ross, Wesley-Rankin’s executive director who gave heartfelt thanks to everyone for their support and shared an overview of the organization’s mission and their programs which create an intelligent pathway for students to achieve their ambitions in education, regardless of their financial circumstances. In addition to children and youth, Wesley-Rankin supports adults through Adult Academy courses and senior citizen programming. Together, the Center bridges gaps in the inequities of education, the arts and mental health. The Center believes that everyone deserves a fair chance to reach his/her potential.
Some very exciting news is the new Wesley-Rankin Scholars Program, in partnership with the June Shelton School. The Shelton School is the largest independent school worldwide for intelligent students with learning differences. Volunteers and staff meet students for three hours each Saturday to use teaching techniques in audiology, speech and reading.
Joining in the tasteful gathering were presenting sponsor Texas Capital Bank and an anonymous Angel Sponsor, Diamond Sponsors Kathryn and Stephen Arata, Jane and Pat Bolin; Platinum Sponsors Elizabeth and Carl Cross and Kay and Duncan Fulton; Gold Sponsors Deanna and Jack Brown, Pam and Philip Bush, Jan and Tom Daulton, Mari and Don Epperson, Alicia and Steve Harris, Martti Benson/Benson Hlavaty, Laura Steen-Patterson and Tom Patterson, Erin and Billy Young.
For more information about Wesley-Rankin Community Center and its programs, visit the website: http://www.wesleyrankin.org
Wesley-Rankin Community Center History:
In 1902, the “Devil’s Doorstep” was in need. Known today as West Dallas, this area was once ruled by the Bonnie and Clyde gang. When most people chose to never enter the neighborhood, Hattie Rankin did not think twice. Her presence with the mother of a gangster during his execution led to the future of a community center. She walked the streets of the neighborhood, grieving with those in crisis and celebrating victories. Hattie’s belief in West Dallas, combined with her unwavering support, connection and enrichment has continued for 116 years through the life of the United Methodist mission, the Wesley-Rankin Community Center.
Photos by Dana Driensky
Sharon Adams, Adams Communications Public Relations, is honored to represent A Taste of West Dallas.