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April 08, 2005 - Little Hearts Grow up to be Happy, Healthy Hearts

What: 18th Annual Little Hearts Fashion Show and Luncheon

Where: Ridgeline Club/Pepsi Center

When: April 8, 2005

Beneficiary: The Children's Hospital Heart Institute, a division of The Children's Hospital

Honoree(s): Esther Carpenter, Fern Primack Heart Who Cares Award

EMCEE: Ed Greene of CBS 4

Presenting Sponsor(s): Great Clips® Children's Charities

Gala Chairperson(s): Lyn Schaffer

Honorary Chairperson(s): Ed Greene of CBS 4

Committee Members: Deb Bingaman, Patty and Graham Clarke, Lori Claussen, Marilyn Day, Amy Feiman, Amy Halvorsen, Julie Headley, Gail Johnson, Sally Kurtzman, Donna Parker, Louise Richardson, Barb Trujillo

Invocation: Claudia Schmitt, Staff Chaplin at The Children's Hospital

Welcome: Dr. Francois Lacour-Gayet, Dr. Dunbar Ivy and Steve Winesett

Sponsors: Accredo, Debbi Bishop, Citicorp Global Investments, Encysive Pharmaceuticals, Hahn Plumbing, Levy Restaurants, Life Watch, Nambé, Pacificare, Mrs. Cyd Rodriguez, Dr. and Mrs. John Strain, United Therapeutics, The Children's Hospital Administration, The Children's Hospital Cardiac Intensive Care Unit, The Children's Hospital Department of Cardiology and Department of Cardiac Surgery, and The Children's Hospital 3 North

Attendance: 350

Attire: Spring fashions!

Models/Fashions: Patients and their families, care-givers and supporters of The Children's Hospital Heart Institute


Donors: Fashions provided by Talbots and Talbots Kids

Blacktie Photos by: Elizabeth Byrnes Crony

 Sponsor Cyd Rodriguez, left, with Honoree Esther Carpenter,  and Dr. Michael  Schaffer
Sponsor Cyd Rodriguez, left, with Honoree Esther Carpenter, and Dr. Michael Schaffer

Elizabeth Byrnes Crony

“We come together today to celebrate the children who represent the many success stories and the miracles that take place everyday a The Children’s Hospital Heart Institute,” said Ed Greene of CBS4, Emcee and Honorary Chair, as he greeted the guests at the 18th Annual Little Hearts Luncheon and Fashion Show. “These successes are the result of the dedication, passion and talent of each and every member of the Heat Institute’s medical and support staff.”

A few hundred guests gathered at the Ridgeline Restaurant at the Pepsi Center to watch and participate in the fashion show, underwritten by Great Clips Children’s Charities and with fashion by Talbots and Talbots Kids. The funds raised by this event are used to help support the “Cardiac Kids” parent support group, on-going programs such as “Shapedown,” and to assist cardiac patients and their families with financial support including but not limited to food lodging, transportation and daily needs.

The “heart” of the matter is the diseases, surgeries and treatment of the problems that surround and deal with the heart, but the real focus of the day was the healthy and happy heartbeats of the many children that have been seen and taken care of by the doctors and staff at The Children's Hospital Heart Institute in Denver, formerly known as the Cardiac Care Center.

Luncheon Chair Lyn Schaffer recognized the many committee members, supporters, hospital staff, and presented one-of-a kind plates, made by the children, to Talbots and Steve Kast, The Children’s Hospital Photographer. “It is amazing to see the many successes of The Children’s Hospital Heart Institute and for all your selfless gift of time and talent, I thank you.”

For the third year in a row, Great Clips® was the title sponsor and they present a $10,000 check from the Great Clips® Children’s Charities. The organization donated the same amount last year. Dr. Michael Schaffer, Pediatric Cardiologist at Children's Hospital and last year’s honoree, spoke about Fern Primack, a very generous patron and volunteer of The Children's Hospital. The “Fern Primack Heart Who Cares Award” was created to commemorate her memory after she passed away two years ago. Fern became involved with the hospital when her granddaughter, Lindsey May, was diagnosed with congenital heart disease as an infant. She is now a 25-year-old college student. Fern went above and beyond with her quiet generous donations and never sought the limelight. The award goes to someone that works behind the scenes in the cardiac community, giving of their time and talent, without seeking recognition. “This year’s recipient is an example of all the values that Fern respected and trusted,” said Dr. Schaffer. “It gives me great pleasure to honor Esther Carpenter with the second annual award.”

The Children's Hospital Heart Institute is considered the best in the country. Last year over 347 little hearts were operated on. Even with this incredible record, many parents feel as if they are on a roller coaster ride, trying to grasp the gravity of the situation. The most often asked question by parents is ‘When can I take my child home?’ From the moment a family enters the hospital, the staff, doctors and hundreds of volunteers make the family feel welcome, explaining and counseling with every step.

Little Hearts Fashion show is a celebration of successes. The models are primarily patients at the hospital and are escorted by doctors, nurses and support staff. Heart disease doesn’t discriminate…the ages of the models ranged from three years to 18-years-old.

Great Clips® styled hair – ringlets were the “hot” look for the girls – and Talbots and Talbots Kids provided the fun spring wardrobe. The highlight was the few “hams” that realized the attention was on them. Seven-year-old Elise Finiol had the guests laughing with her motto, "Eating all your vegetables makes you healthy!"

It was an event filled with heart-filled moments, hearing the success stories and watching the "angels" skipping down the runway. No extra charge for the tears...Hearts of children will keep ticking - literally, because of the generosity of the Annual Little Hearts Luncheon and Fashion Show.

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