Summer camp isnt on the minds of many Middle Georgians this time of year, but it is on the minds -- and in the hearts -- of the staff of the Advocacy Resource Center (ARC) of Macon, hosting the fifth annual New Years Eve Big Bash on Monday at the Terminal Station.
The nonprofit agency is primarily state- and federally-funded but relies on fundraisers to be able to supplement its services, including summer camp in Jacksons Gap, Ala., that it provides to people with developmental disabilities.
We take about 100 people, including volunteers. The camp is fully accessible; even people with significant quadriplegia and cerebral palsy can participate in activities like the zip line and boat rides, said Andy Harrell, ARC chief administrative officer. We have a certain number of slots, and we take individuals regardless of their ability to pay.
The Big Bash features music by the Grapevine Band, and those with table seating are invited to bring baskets of food and drink. This year, a cash bar will be provided by Lemongrass. A highlight of the evening will be the silent auction, which includes a trip to Jekyll Island, golf packages, clothing, jewelry, artwork, gift certificates, memberships and more, said Betsy Powell, board of directors secretary and ARC fundraising chair.
The New Years Eve fundraiser has grown and developed every year; this is the third year with the silent auction. We have a lot of donated items, and we encourage people to give in that way, Harrell said, adding that all profits go back to the agency.
In its fourth year at the Terminal Station, the Big Bash is at the center of Macons New Years Eve festivities, Powell said.
Its the ideal place to be on New Years Eve, with the Cherry Blossom Ball Drop right out in the plaza; its close to all the action, Powell said.
A general admission ticket has been added this year for people who may want to enjoy the band and silent auction but dont need table seating. The event has sold out every year, Powell said, and general admission tickets will be sold until the event space reaches capacity.
The ARC was founded in 1953 by a group of parents who had sons and daughters with developmental disabilities, who couldnt be streamlined in public schools, and developed into residential services with group homes and apartments in the 1980s, Harrell said, adding that the agency provides care to those people in residential services around the clock. The ARC also provides community activities and vocational services.
Its pretty awesome to see the difference you can make, Powell said.
New Years Eve Big Bash
When: 8 p.m. Monday
Where: Terminal Station, 200 Cherry St.
Cost: $25 general admission, $45 per person or $80 per couple for a seat at a table, whole tables $160 and up
Tickets: 477-7764 or arcmacon.org