Jazzy Thing event benefits Annandale Village clients

For more than 36 years, Annandale Village has been serving adults with developmental disabilities through our residential community in Suwanee.

As a nonprofit organization, Annandale relies on contributions from the community and client fees to retain quality staff, maintain and develop programs, and to meet the ever-changing needs of our clients - the Villagers. As our clients and their families age, family funds often dwindle, leaving no option but to request fee assistance or to be put on a waiting list for state services.

In response to the financial assistance needs of the Villagers and the need for expanded services for adults with developmental disabilities, the Annandale Board of Trustees and staff developed an annual fundraising event called The Jazzy Thing. Proceeds from the event are used to supplement the approximately $250,000 in scholarships awarded annually to Annandale Villagers.

We are calling on you for your help in supporting Annandale Village through participating in The Jazzy Thing. Last year, the event brought in a record-breaking $158,000. This year, we need to exceed that, and we need your help to do it. Here is a taste of what you can expect at Annandale's Jazzy Thing.

The aroma of down-home Cajun cooking tickles your nose as crawfish dangle in nets welcoming you into the swampy street party. You will feel like you just stepped into a little piece of Louisiana as you listen and dance to music by Zydefunk and enjoy savory foods provided by authentic Cajun cooks.

You have to visit the Cajun Bazaar sponsored by Van Adams Jewelers. Visit the silent auction, where you can bid on dazzling jewelry or one-of-a-kind finds. There are Spicy Bites booths providing tasty little hors d'oeuvres to tide you over until the buffets open. Each booth is competing for the title of "Best Spicy Bite" and a cash prize.

The next stop on this stroll is the casino sponsored by the Kroger Corporation. Try your luck at blackjack, craps, roulette and Texas hold 'em. The more you play the more you will help better the lives of adults with mental retardation/developmental disabilities, so everyone ends up a winner.

The event will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. April 29 at the Buford Distribution Center at 1770 Satellite Blvd. in Buford. Southeast Investment Properties and Dividend Capital Trust donated a fantastic venue.

Order your tickets now! For more information about Annandale, to order tickets ($75 each), or donate an auction item, please call 770-945-8381. Call soon, space is limited and we don't want you to miss the opportunity to participate in one of the "101 Things Every Gwinnettian Must Do" as published by Gwinnett Magazine. Come for a hot time, and leave with a warm feeling!

Brandi Russell, our Director Development and employee of nine years, contributed to this column.