Prohibition Gala Highlights Hot Springs’ Past
Photos by Brittney Dickerson-Vining, Avis Rubra Photography
With the New Year upon us, many groups have begun planning next year’s fundraisers and charity drives.
Holly Heer, the fundraising chair for the Junior Auxiliary (JA) of Hot Springs is working hard to make sure that the JA programs that support children in Garland County are thriving.
JA of Hot Springs has several important programs that benefit different groups of children. One program, “Life” teaches life skills to children preparing to age out of foster care. The “HeArt for Art” program educates students in Garland County about heart disease and its prevention through educational art curriculum and creative art activities. The program “JA Fun Day” is a field day designed for all elementary special needs students in Garland County. JA also supports families in “The Call,” a nonprofit organization that mobilizes local churches to serve local children and youth placed in foster care. Members offer assistance for any needs the families may have, whether it’s toys, clothes, or meals. In addition, JA’s scholarship project provides scholarship opportunities to local graduating high school seniors and/or currently enrolled college students.
But in order to fund all of these fantastic programs in Garland County, Heer and the JA of Hot Springs need all of the financial support they can get. To achieve this, the JA of Hot Springs hosts an annual fundraising event called “Prohibition.”
“This event, Prohibition, funds all of these programs for kids in Garland County. It’s the only fundraiser during the year, and we didn’t have one last year because of COVID, so we are really hoping to make up for it this year,” Heer explains. “This is the seventh Prohibition that we’ve done.”
Heer says that Prohibition has ties to Hot Springs gambling and under-the-table liquor past, both of which boomed during the Prohibition era.
Event-goers can expect to step back in time 100 years to 1922, with flappers, derby hats, gaming tables, live band music, as well as live and silent auctions. With Tito’s as the presenting sponsor, and with AY Media Group as the presenting media sponsor, Heer anticipates that this will be the best year yet for the event voted as Hot Springs’ best charity gala by the city’s residents.
Heer says that they are still accepting sponsorships from businesses across Arkansas, who use the gala to advertise and raise awareness for a worthy cause. There are several sponsorship levels and benefits, such as The Real McCoy ($500 level), The Cat’s Meow ($1,000 level), Bee’s Knees ($2,500 level), The Ritz ($5,000 level) and The Great Gatsby ($10,000 level).
Heer explains why she and the Junior Auxiliary feel compelled to help fundraise for foster kids in Garland County.
“Junior Auxiliary of Hot Springs represents a serious endeavor by women to render charitable services in their community, with an emphasis on children,” Heer explains. “Junior Auxiliary members strive to be active and constructive participants in the communities in which they live and to assume responsible leadership in meeting community needs. It provides the members with the opportunity to serve and to be a vital part of the community through various projects.”
Heer says that many people believe JA members enjoy leisurely hangouts but explains that hard work towards events like Prohibition has proved these claims untrue. Heer and other members of the Junior Auxiliary have even started a hashtag for their events, explaining that they are #notjustladieswholunch.
Prohibition will be held on January 22nd, 2022 from 7 P.M. to 11 P.M. at the Hamp Williams Building in Hot Springs. Attendants must be 21 and older, and tickets are $75.