SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — An event that raises money for children with critical illnesses is gearing up for one last hurrah.
Every summer, Great Bear Ski Valley hosts a car show, concert, carnival, and auction on a single Sunday for Angels With A Dream.
“This is our biggest year. We’ve never had this many packages for the silent auction, we’ve never had as many money donations,” Angels With A Dream co-founder Lucy Welbig said.
The event is free to attend, but annually raises tens of thousands of dollars to benefit Make-A-Wish South Dakota & Montana.
“All kids and families, regardless of their means, can go out and have a day that’s filled with joy and filled with hope and just the opportunity to be outside, have fun, look at some really cool cars, hear some great music, jump on inflatables and just have a great time,” Make-A-Wish South Dakota & Montana President & CEO Sue Salter said.
Angels With A Dream has raised more than $170,000 over the past eleven years, including more than $24,000 last year, and recently granted their 17th wish.
“It’s going to be a very emotional day, but it’s also a very happy day because you know what you’re doing, you’re raising money to grant wishes,” Welbig said.
It will be a day of mixed emotions as this is the final Angels With A Dream following the death of event founder Roxie Johnson last November.
“It’s just going to be a big puddle (laugh). I can tell you there’s going to be a lot of tears because she won’t be here, but she will be,” Welbig said.
“Absolutely, we’re going to miss her every step of the way, but she’s here,” Roxie’s sister Jamie Kessler said.
Jamie Kessler is Roxie’s sister and stepped up to help organize this year’s fundraiser.
“I’m excited. I hope it’s huge, I hope we have the most people ever, and we get to celebrate her,” Kessler said.
“Sunday afternoon, 3:00, is going to be a little emotional,” Great Bear Ski Valley General Manager Dan Grider said. “Part of Great Bear was this event, so we’re anticipating a huge turnout, the weather’s going to be beautiful. We just encourage everybody to come out and one last goodbye to Roxie,” Grider added.
We’ll tell you why Roxie started Angels With A Dream in next Friday’s Eye on KELOLAND.
The final Angels event is this Sunday from 10:00 until 3:00 at Great Bear Ski Valley in Sioux Falls.