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Casino benefit to assist Ronald McDonald House, ARC

By Staff | Aug 16, 2016

There won’t be much in the way of two-stepping at The Ranch in Fort Myers on the night of Thursday, Aug. 18.

There will be plenty of gambling, however. But it will be for two great causes.

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate will host its CARES Charity Casino Night, featuring music and a silent auction, with all proceeds raised from tickets sales and the silent auction to directly benefit the Animal Refuge Center (ARC) of Southwest Florida in North Fort Myers and the Community Cooperative.

Tracie Hurley is real estate agent with Coldwell Banker, who is also the CARES representative, Coldwell’s charitable arm and a 501c3 non-profit group. She said much of what they make through fundraising goes to Ronald McDonald House.

Last year, they also raised funds for the Community Cooperative, but decided they needed to find another charity to support.

“We wanted to add something different. There are a lot of animal lovers out there and animals that need your help,” Hurley said. “We partnered with them so we could give back to that section of the community.”

She said many people from her company have adopted animals from there and donated time to ARC.

ARC is the largest no-kill shelter and sanctuary for dogs and cats in the state. ARC is in great need of blankets, food, towels as well as monetary donations.

Sue Miller, volunteer coordinator for ARC, said they are excited that someone wants to set up an event for them.

“We don’t get any federal funding, so we keep going based on donations and benefits like these,” Miller said. “Without the contributions from the community and the people who are setting this event up, we would cease to exist.”

The Community Cooperative provides food, clothing, book supplies and the “Healthy School Pantry Program” for needy families in Southwest Florida.

There will be the usual casino games such as roulette, poker and blackjack, with a live DJ, and a cash bar will be available with complimentary appetizers. Soda and water will be provided by The Ranch.

There will also be numerous items available through a silent auction, such as jewelry, a liquor basket and dinners at numerous restaurants, Hurley said, with money going to the charities.

Tax deductible tickets are $25 per person, which includes $2,000 worth of poker chips (no cash value). Donations will also be accepted.

“We really want this to be a successful event. We’re shooting for raising between $5,000 and $10,000. For them, that would be a lot of money,” Hurley said. “If we bring in enough drinking customers, The Ranch may also donate some of the proceeds. I just hope everyone comes and has a great time.”

To purchase tickets or to make a donation, contact Hurley at 220-8151 or at Tracie.Hurley@ FloridaMoves.com.