The Times West Virginian

February 6, 2014

Have a heart and help child advocacy

By Kristen Talerico
Times West Virginian

FAIRMONT — The Marion County Child Advocacy Center is holding its inaugural Have a Heart Benefit Dance and Dinner on Saturday, Feb. 15, at the Fairmont State University Ballroom.

Michael Baker, executive director at the CAC, said the board of directors had been looking for a creative way to incorporate the community into the agency for years. He said the group’s typical fundraisers attracted the same groups of people, and they wanted to look outside the box.

“We are not aware of any formal events in Marion County, so we tried to incorporate the formal dance and dinner into the fundraiser while building relationships with local businesses,” Baker said.

The CAC is a nonprofit agency, and 100 percent of the proceeds will stay in the Marion County office helping to fund services for children, bills, staff salaries, staff trainings, etc., Baker said.

Cocktail hour starts at 6 p.m., with drinks such as margarita/strawberry margarita (“Latin Lover”), cosmopolitan (“Love Potion No. 9”), spritzers (“Sparkling Sweetheart”), champagne, vodka, triple sec, pineapple juice (“Flirtini”) and vodka cranberry (“Cupid’s Arrow”).

Baker said dinner will be served at 7 p.m., and prime rib, New Orleans pecan chicken and stuffed mushrooms will be served as main dishes, with sides of oven-roasted red skin potatoes, asparagus, salad and dinner rolls. Cheesecake with strawberries and chocolate confusion cake will be available for dessert.

A dance starting at 8 p.m. will follow the meal, and people should expect it to be over around 10 p.m., Baker added.

Baker said former Congressman Alan Mollohan will be master of ceremonies at the event.

Entertainment for the night will be Michael Stewart and The Skinny’s.

“They are a phenomenal band, and the crowd will be shocked and surprised by their talent,” Baker said.

A silent auction will also be taking place during the event. An original acrylic painting by Dawn Marie, a limited print of downtown Fairmont by Lotus MacDowell, a Tuscan Sun Spa package, a two-day/one-night stay at Lakeview Golf Resort & Spa and many more items will be auctioned off throughout the evening.

Baker said the event is a great cause and a huge support to an agency and service that most people in Marion County do not know exist.

“The CAC served 130 children in 2013, and 157 in 2012, just out of our community who are physically or sexually abused, and we are committed to doing anything we can to begin the healing process and allow the children tell their story,” Baker added.

“We have received unbelievable support from companies and local businesses, and have been so gracious for this,” Baker said. “The CAC feels really excited about the event and hopes it is something everyone will enjoy.”

Tickets to the event are $150 and should be pre-ordered by calling the CAC at 304-333-3936 or by emailing

Email Kristen Talerico at or follow her on Twitter @KTalericoTWV.