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Friday, April 15, 2011

A Special Evening

I will never forget the day that my mom called and told me that my aunt and uncle had just found out that the baby my aunt was carrying had Downs Syndrome. I can honestly say, I was so excited! I believe there is something so special about a child with Downs beautiful, innocent, honest and pure. I couldn't wait to meet this beautiful child! My cousin Carmen is such a special treasure! I can remember one Thanksgiving I was teaching her a few words in sign language, and at Christmas time she was so excited to show me that she remembered the signs I taught her.

Why do I tell you all of this about my cousin? What does this have to do with photography you may ask? Well, I have been asked several times to photograph several events that the Up Sides of Downs, a non-profit organization that gives support and provides a community for families with Downs children. It is a great organization and I am blessed to help however I can.

This past weekend we headed to Cleveland to document their annual fundraiser, a Reverse Raffle. It was a lot of fun and so beautiful to see over 650 people in attendance to support such a great cause!

I hope these images can give you a feel of the spirit of the evening!

LaMalfa Center puts on a serious spread!
The fruit was quite the enticing display, as the desserts were irresistible!
This couple just had a baby with Downs about 9 months ago and were welcomed into the USOD community quickly. Matt, with his proud niece, received recognition for the work he and his sister have been doing for years, speaking to people of all ages about Downs Syndrome to educate others and share about their community.
Many people walked away happy winners all night long
from the Reverse Raffle and the Chinese Auction.
Not gonna lie, would have loved to brought both of these home to Jacob!
Everyone couldn't help, but cut a rug on the dance floor,
thanks to the great DJ'ing by the Marino Brothers!

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