Chris Lanning would feel royally wonderful if he could reach his tentative goal of raising some $7,000 at a special bingo event from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday at the American Legion Post No. 24 in Columbus.
That emotion would surface because it could push him a long way toward becoming king of the prom court for the 10th Annual Child Abuse Prevention Adult Prom a week later at 7 p.m. April 22 at The Commons. The top male monetary vote-getter at https://capprom.com earns the honor while the funds go toward nonprofit Family Service Inc.’s child abuse prevention programs.
“I would love to fill up the place on Saturday,” Lanning said, adding that he could squeeze in about 175 people to the venue at 2515 25th St.
Lanning is among 12 total members of the king and queen court for the 21-and-older event that generated a record $100,000 plus last year. Organizers said Thursday that a few tickets remain for the gathering that includes a silent auction, a 50/50 raffle, prom pictures, and music from Matty O Entertainment amid the theme “There’s No Place Like Prom.”
Planners are hoping for big proceeds for the cause. April is Child Abuse Prevention Month.
“Obviously we’d love to get $100,00 plus (again),” said Raina Jones, the prom coordinator for Family Service, which provides a wide range of counseling services and related outreaches.
Dr. Kelly Weisner, a member of the female prom court, mentioned that she began to especially appreciate Family Service’s child abuse prevention outreach when she began volunteering in her son’s kindergarten classroom.
“It has really opened my eyes to all of what goes on in kids’ lives,” said Weisner, who refers to herself as trauma-informed on the prom website. “From the outside looking in, Columbus is a great city, and it very much certainly IS a wonderful city close-up. But that doesn’t dismiss the fact that, everywhere, people sometimes struggle.
“How amazing it is to have a person like Raina and an organization Family Service to provide education to our kids.”
Weisner, a physical therapist, added that another angle helps her appreciate Family Service’s work with awareness in subjects such as body safety. She said a number of her patients have been victims of abuse.
“I’ve seen what that does to people,” she said. “So it really makes sense to help in a way before some of these longer-term mental and physical elements can manifest in people.”
About the event
What: 10th Annual Child Abuse Prevention Adult Prom
When: 7 p.m. April 22
Where: The Commons, 300 Washington St. in Columbus