The three-day “tasty major fun-raiser” called the Wilmington Wine and Chocolate Festival was a charted success last weekend as it has been in past years.

Vendors, volunteers and supporters came out, pitched in and dug in with both feet to make this event one of the best charity fundraisers in the Port City.

Opening night was a gala affair, and boy, did the stars come out to shine! Rhonda Bellamy, Executive Director of the Arts Council of New Hanover County, Donna Joyner-Green, Director of the Community Arts Center's Community Programs, Nina Repeta of Dawson's Creek, along with one of the Port City’s most celebrated music men: El Jay-Johnson, kicked off opening night.

As the food, fun and frolic continued throughout the night, vendor’s demonstrated and shared the best fanfare on the eastern seaboard!

There was music, singing, a chocolate waterfall, and some of the nicest people that you’ll ever want to meet. The proceeds benefitted both the V.O.C.A.L. (Volunteer Older Citizens Action League) and S.A.S.(Senior Advisory Services).

Organized in 1989, V.O.C.A.L. New Hanover County, Inc. or (Volunteer Older Citizens Action League) is a nonprofit organization that responds to the many challenges facing seniors in our community.

As the mature population continues to choose Wilmington and the surrounding counties as their retirement destination, this fundraising event will continue to support the New Hanover County Senior Resource Center. This ongoing support from VOCAL will sustain and enhance those essential programs which maintain the health and well-being of a vulnerable population. All proceeds from the Wilmington Wine and Chocolate Festival will continue to benefit seniors in our community.

Senior Advisory Services (S.A.S.) is a network of nonprofit and other organizations advising, promoting, providing and referring services for senior adults in the Wilmington area.

Some of the services seniors have received through these programs include: Family Caregiver Respite, Meals on Wheels, Ensure Nutrition Program, Foster Grandparent Program, Retired Senior Volunteer Program, and Emergency Utility Payments in the New Hanover County area.

Details: (910) 794-9160 or see: www.wilmingtonsas.org

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