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By Tom Durkin
Artists donate to fundraiser for caregiver relief Sept. 16
One Source-Empowering Caregivers (OSEC) wants you to eat, drink, dance, be merry – and buy fine art – at their first HeART & Wine Gala at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 16, at the Foothills Event Center in Grass Valley.

Dozens of the foothills’ finest artists have donated one or more works of art – ranging from paintings to photography to ceramics to jewelry to sculptures to lessons to mixed media creations.

All these creations will be for sale in a silent auction to benefit One Source-Empowering Caregivers, according to Donna Raibley, the founder and unpaid executive director of the nonprofit organization.

OSEC provides free respite care to 24/7 caregivers. Trained and compassionate Volunteer Care Specialists visit a caregiver’s home once a week to watch over care recipient while the caregiver gets a “carefree” timeout to do whatever she or he wants.

“We will use the money raised from the gala to train more Volunteer Care Specialists,” Raibley said. “It costs about $250 to train each volunteer, and we’re hoping to train four more classes of volunteers in the coming year.”

“We have a waiting list of caregivers in need,” said Raibley solemnly.
While the auction might be silent, the HeART & Wine Gala will be filled with music.

One of Northern California’s hottest dance bands, the Earles of Newtown, will headline the fundraising event. Additional music acts include Purdon’s Crossing, the Ruckrich Family Band and Sibling Revelry with Elena Rayo.

It wouldn’t be a gala without food and drink. There will be a no-host bar of fine wines and beers.

Additionally, BriarPatch Co-op, Emily’s Catering & Cakes, At Your Service Catering, Ben Franklin’s and Grass Valley Sign have contributed food and in-kind services, Raibley reported.

Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Advance tickets are available at The Book Seller and the Art Works Gallery in Grass Valley.

They may also be obtained by calling OSEC at 530-802-6154.
“We already have more than 150 art pieces donated,” Raibley reported Aug. 29. She said she’s expecting at least another 50 or more by show time.

Artists who wish to donate should call 530-205-9514 or write draibley@empoweringcaregivers.org.

Artist and volunteer Flo Fahrenheit is managing the meticulous process of cataloging each donation.

She chose to be art manager of the complex auction because, “I’m just a person who doesn’t go home until everything is done.”

Prior to the auction, art lovers may preview many of the auction items on the One Source-Empowering Caregivers Facebook page and/or website (https://empoweringcaregivers.org).

All the artwork, of course, will be on display at the gala. Tables will be set aside with bidding sheets for bidders to name their price.

Bidding begins at 6 p.m. There will be three sessions closing at 7:30 p.m., 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. The party, however, continues until 10 p.m. with the Earles of Newtown singing and swinging.

In an unusual twist to silent auctions, each bidding sheet will have a Purchase Now option that is slightly higher than stated value of the artwork.

Thus, if a patron sees something they like, they can pay the Purchase Now price and own it before the auction is over, Raibley confirmed.
The arts and entertainment community of Nevada County has always been among the first to step up to donate their talents to worthy social causes.

Abstract artist Lil McGill (aka poet Nancy Burns) donated a $1,000 acrylic canvas.

“I have a keen affinity with the caregiving space, and I understand the nature of being a guide or attendant for the ill and dying,” McGill wrote in an email.

“It is difficult work of extremely high value … and I am grateful for those angels who are able to do it and for organizations like One Source, which create structures to support caregivers and this much needed, heartfelt work,” McGill concluded.

LeeAnn Brook of Brook Design Group has also donated an acrylic original. “I was so inspired when I learned of OSEC,” she said. “I like that it’s a grassroots, local group, not some national organization.”

Of course, multimedia artist Yvon Dockter has contributed several pieces – and “I’m going to be there this time,” she vowed.

Dockter was taking care of her dying husband when Raibley, Fahrenheit and other artists held an art sale to raise money for Yvon’s expenses when Craig Dockter passed.

But before he passed, Raibley, who was giving respite to Yvon, made a deathbed promise to Craig she would start what is now OSEC.

Tom Durkin is a freelance writer and photographer in Nevada County. He is a former creative consultant to One Source-Empowering Caregivers. Contact him at tdurkin@vfr.net or www.tomdurkin-writer.net.
Photo by Flo Fahrenheit
“Gone Fishing” by Flo Fahrenheit is one of about 200 fine art pieces that will be auctioned off at the HeART & Wine Gala.