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SEE PHOTOS: CASA Luau breaks fundraising record

The Calvada Eye was transformed into the site of a Hawaiian-style festival this past Saturday and hundreds of area residents crowded into the park to revel in an evening of food, fun and entertainment during the 2022 CASA Luau.

Hosted on Sept. 17, the CASA Luau is always a great time for attendees but the event has a much more meaningful purpose than pure enjoyment. It’s one of the most important events of the year for Pioneer Territory Court Appointed Special Advocates, or CASA, as it helps bring in funding that the nonprofit organization needs to continue its mission of recruiting, training and support volunteer advocates for foster youth.

“The luau was fantastic!” local CASA Executive Director Kathie McKenna raved with evident delight. “I had so many people talk to me at the event and call me after to tell me how much they enjoyed everything, the food, entertainment and of course, the auctions and raffle. As last time, Rau Tama Nui, our live performance group, was fabulous, This year the musicians were not able to come due to a conflicting schedule so they brought their music and their keiki, or children, dancers. Those young ladies are so talented. This was our best ever luau, netting over $20,000.”

A good chunk of that amount came from the 200-plus tickets sold but the raffle and auctions helped pull in plenty of cash too, with some highly sought-after prizes up for grabs.

“We had a 50/50 raffle that came to $1,500 and we split the pot with the winner. We also had pick-a-prize raffles, a silent auction and a live auction. The live auction featured tickets to a Golden Knights game and tickets to see the Raiders play, as well as a stone from Written in Stone, Botox and skin care products by Aesthetic Enhancements and an autographed baseball hat by Don Larsen, pitcher for the New York Yankees in 1956, who is the only pitcher to ever have a no-hitter and perfect game in a World Series.”

The CASA Luau took place at a new venue this year, with the organization receiving permission from the county for use of the Calvada Eye. “We loved it at the Eye!” McKenna said. “We so appreciated the county for allowing us to use this park. It is such a beautiful place, with trees, grass and a duck pond. I will guarantee we will be back there next year.”

McKenna offered her thanks to those who helped make the CASA Luau such a success this year, including 775.FYI, Desert View Hospital, Meadows Bank, Paul M. Healey and Sons CPAs, Preferred RV Resort, Artesian Cellars, Benny Levias, Battle Born Financial Advisor and Health Insurance Broker, Gunny’s Air Conditioning and Heating, JK Nelson Law, Valley Electric and the Pahrump Community Health Center. Also contributing to the event were notable local elected officials, judge Kim Wanker and Nye County Sheriff Sharon Wehrly.

At this time, CASA has just completed its latest training session and four brand new volunteer foster youth advocates have been sworn in by Judge Robert Lane. McKenna said the organization will now collect applications for its next class, which will take place either this fall or just after the new year.

For more information on CASA visit www.PTCASANV.org or call 775-505-2272. The local CASA office is located at 1321 S. Highway 160, suite 9A.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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