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Save the Date December 16, 2017
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Black Tie International:
S. M. Wright Foundation
19th Annual "Christmas in the Park"


Dallas, TX - Slated for Saturday, December 16th, thousands of southern Dallas families will gather at the Fair Park Automobile Building for the 19th Annual Christmas in the Park, which helps meet great needs where thousands of families struggle every day to provide basic necessities.  Over 44,000 people were served in 2016 with basic necessities like clothes, coats and food while others found toys, bikes and more to help make a child’s Christmas wish come true.
For some, the holiday season is not a time to rejoice, but a period met with hardship, heartache and disappointment.  Sponsors, underwriters, volunteers and supporters of Christmas in the Park work every year to make Christmas dreams come true for these families. Everyone is welcome to join in!
Organized by the S.M. Wright Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit organization providing support and stability to inner-city underprivileged children and less fortunate families in the South Dallas/Fair Park community, Christmas in the Park is perhaps Dallas’ largest holiday charity event, which has grown from serving less than 200 underprivileged kids in 1998 to over 44,000 residents in 2016. 
Joining host team S. M. Wright II, co-founder, President and CEO of the S. M. Wright Foundation will be his mother, co-founder Debra D. Wright, his brother, co-founder The Reverend Calvin WrightRay Washburne, President and Managing Director, Highland Park Village and co-founder of MCrowd Restaurant Group, and his wife, Heather, Honorary Chairs; Nita and Cullum Clark, Chairman of the Board at the S.M. Wright Foundation and their children, several co-chairs, along with many of Dallas’ business and community leaders.
One of the highlights is Coats for Kids, which is a program created by Maddy McGuire, a Highland Park High School (HPHS) student. She has been participating with her parents, Natalie and Mike, along with her sister Sophie in Christmas in the Park since she was three years old, making 2017 her 14th year to volunteer. She also founded the S. M. Wright Club at HPHS and along with approximately 50 volunteers, seeks donations of new warm coats all year long to give hope and happiness to kids in desperate need. Funds raised by the club purchase new Coats for Kids through Burlington Coat Factory’s community program and HPHS awards service hours for students. Since Maddie graduated last spring, her sister, Sophie, has taken on the leadership of the SM Wright Club at HPHS. 
2017 co-chairs are Allie Beth and Pierce Allman, Gina and Ken Betts, Julie and Darren Blanton, Deni and Kevin Bryant, Doug Deason, Ola and Randall Fojtasek, Suzanne Bock Grishman and Michael Grishman, Tavia and Clark Hunt, Brooke and Jeff Jackson, Natalie and Mike McGuireChris and Joe PopoloLisa and Jeff Rachor, Pat and Emmitt Smith, Michael Watson, Jimmy Westcott, Carrie and John Willding
All of these supporters and their families have long-time traditions of volunteering to disburse toys, food, other necessities and help with managing the event. Over 1,800 volunteers will join to share the holiday season with their families.
The foundation also provides hunger relief, educational support, health, social service assistance and economic empowerment. The foundation’s goals are to move these families from a position of dependency to self-sufficiency and to restore stability to families and the community. 
For more information on Christmas in the Park and the S. M. Wright Foundation and how you, your corporation and business can become involved, visit the website at   

Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/

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