Archive for year: 2015

Last minute gift idea!

The holidays have arrived! I’ve been busy running errands, finding gifts and attending holiday recitals, shows and the like. I love this time of year. The snow (a white Christmas is a MUST in my book), the lights and holiday sounds fill the days. It all makes me so thankful.

I know many are facing different, perhaps difficult, circumstances this season. Let us all keep them in our minds and hearts in the coming days.

In case you haven’t quite finished that shopping I have a great idea! Raffle tickets for Sunshine Fest 2016 are on sale now! The prizes are fantastic too! Plus you’ll be supporting a wonderful cause and helping to make the Sunshine Hospitality Home a reality. Click HERE to find out where you can purchase a ticket!

2016 raffle ticket

There are amazing prizes for a $10 ticket!

  • Truyu | Exilis Elite Skin Tightening Package
  • Hugo’s | $700 Gift Card
  • L&M Meats | $500 Gift Card
  • Medora Package | Lodging, Musical, Pitch Fork Fondue and 2 rounds of Golf at Bully Pulpit
  • Dusterhoft Family Stores | $500 Gift Card

Happy, Happy Holidays to you all!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog


Meet Haley!

There are several new faces involved in the upcoming Sunshine Fest. I thought I’d introduce you to a few in the next few posts.

Meet Haley!

Q: How did you get involved with the Sunshine Memorial Foundation?

A: I got involved in theSunshine Memorial Foundation by applying for an internship experience last summer. I saw the description of what the internship would be like and I thought it would be something I would really enjoy! I interviewed with both Donovan and Jena and got offered the internship shortly later! It has been such a good experience and I could not be more thankful for the opportunity!


Q: What is your favorite part of working with the Foundation?Haley Steinwand Pic.

A: My favorite part about working at the Sunshine Memorial Foundation is working with all the people I have met through the experience. I walk in and know every day that I’m going to learn something new and it is going to benefit me and my future. Every day is different which also makes it fun! Keeps me on my toes!


Q: What are you most looking forward to at Sunshine Fest 2016?

A: I’m really looking forward to seeing how Sunshine Fest is going to come together. I have never been to the event before so it has been fun being a part of the planning process and putting everything together for the big day. I can’t wait to see how it turns out and everyone there celebrating such an amazing event for an amazing cause!

I can attest to the fact that Haley is wonderful to work with. I have been bothering her on a regular basis for information, pictures, ideas, etc. I’m looking forward to seeing the whole event come together as well! Don’t forget registration is currently up and running at and if you haven’t already, find (and BUY!) some raffle tickets. You won’t be sorry you supported a great cause!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog

Don’t wait, hydrate!

I’m always trying to incorporate more healthy lifestyle tips into my everyday life. One thing that I’ve really improved upon in the last year or so is drinking water. It seems like such an easy concept but in reality I have to remind myself and sometimes trick myself into getting those ounces down each day!

Tritan_DRAFTThe Sunshine Memorial Foundation supports and will continue to support several projects related to hydration and hiker awareness educational programs. Hydration has always been, and will always be, central to the Foundation’s mission and the
effect it has on our lives. The Sunshine Memorial Foundation supports hydration initiatives such as the “Don’t Wait, Hydrate” program from Safe Kids Grand Forks. Dehydration is something that can be prevented. Education and awareness can help save lives. The Foundation also plans to sponsor programs and provide trail head signs dedicated to help educate hikers about all safety measures.

So, as we enter the winter season, please remember to drink your water and hydrate, always! Something that’s so simple sounding can really save your life!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog

A shining ray of sunshine…

As I have been thinking and planning for upcoming blogs, my thoughts inevitably return to the reason it all began.

Shannon “Sunshine” Larson died September 8, 2007, in Mesa, Arizona, of natural causes related to heat exhaustion, while hiking in Usery Mountain Park.  Shannon was 31 years old and just beginning a new chapter in her life.

Shannon had recently moved to the Phoenix area with her fiancé and although she had done extensive hiking previously, she was unaware of the effects of the intense heat and the subsequent large quantities of water necessary under these circumstances.  Perhaps her death could have been avoided if information had been available to her about the dangers of dehydration and heat Shannon_ORIGstroke.

Shannon was born and raised in Grand Forks, North Dakota, the daughter of Van and Dee Larson.  There,  she attended elementary and high school and graduated from the University of North Dakota.  Following graduation, she was employed for two years at Ecolab in Grand Forks.  In the fall of 2006, she moved to Kazakhstan, where she taught Business English, tutored students in English usage, was a member of an International Hiking Club where she participated in philanthropic activities.  Also while there, she and her fiancé, Matt Morrison, traveled extensively, including several weeks in Indonesia.

Shannon had a passion for living life to its fullest and was a shining ray of sunshine….  Spending time with family and friends and traveling were her main interests.  Her winning smile, compassionate and helping nature, generosity, and sense of humor, touched the lives of all those around her.  Whether you had a long-term friendship or just met Shannon, she had such a charm and genuineness about her that she seemed to captivate you, and would always connect with a wink and a smile!

Her family has created the Sunshine Memorial Foundation to honor her memory and help others just as she did. The Foundation is currently raising funds to build the Sunshine Hospitality Home which will help so many. It will provide a place to stay for those in Grand Forks for medical treatments and appointments of many kinds. It will most definitely be a place that brings sunshine to many in difficult circumstances. Proceeds from the upcoming Sunshine Fest will benefit the Home.

We could all use a little more sunshine in our days. My challenge to you is to bring an extra dose of sunshine to someone else’s life this week, friend or stranger. I just might buy a few extra cups of coffee for others this week!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog

Happy Halloween!

I can’t believe it’s the end of October already. Where does the time go? My girls are gearing up for trick-or-treating, costumes and makeup. As you’re preparing for the festivities of this upcoming weekend keep in mind another occasion at which you could use those wonderful costumes. We LOVE to see Sunshine Fest teams dressed in fabulous costumes. Here are a few pictures from past  Sunshine Fests to inspire you!




Enjoy the holiday ahead and remember to turn your clock back!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog

Save the date!

Hello! Happy Fall to you all. My family and I enjoyed a wonderful summer, but I must say I’m enjoying the crisp mornings and the beautiful autumn colors that surround us these days. It’s time to begin thinking about the 6th Annual Sunshine Fest already!

Sunshine Memorial Foundation is preparing to host its annual event, Sunshine Fest. Sunshine Fest is an annual event that each year helps to raise money for charitable causes. The event consists of a 5K outdoor fun run and an indoor 3K walk, a Health and Wellness Fair, music, fun activities and dozens of amazing prizes!! Last year, with the help of generous corporate sponsors and more than 1,000 participants, Sunshine Memorial Foundation was able to raise in excess of $75,000 for the proposed Sunshine Hospitality Home project.

Save the date!!! The 6th Annual Sunshine Fest will be held January 30th, 2016 at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks. Lots of activities will happen from 9 a.m. to noon.

Sunshine Fest 2016’s proceeds will be going to the Sunshine Memorial Foundation in support of the proposed Sunshine Hospitality Home project.

The proposed Sunshine Hospitality Home will be a place for patients and their families, affected by critical illnesses, diseases, and injuries, who must travel to Grand Forks to fulfill their healthcare needs. A hospitality house provides individuals with a place to sleep, eat, keep their belongings, relax and find comfort. It will be open to all ages and situations and will welcome families from the Grand Forks and surrounding region.

Mark your calendars now! Then check back here for entries about all things Sunshine Fest.

Pre-register at

I’m looking forward to bringing you some behind the scenes information and more. Stay tuned!

Until then,

Stacy Signature for blog

Sunshine Fest Needs You!

Sunshine Fest is January 30, 2016! We need volunteers to help us plan this amazing event!

Save the date: July 14, 5:30 p.m., Planning Kickoff Meeting, Center for Innovation

To sign up for a committee, or for more information, contact Jena at 701.738.2462 or Sunshine Fest

What does “sunshine” mean to you?

What does “sunshine” mean to you? Join the experience! Tell us what “sunshine” means to you on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and use‪#‎SuiteSunshine‬. All posts will be part of a slideshow during the social of The Suite Sunshine Experience on April 23! We will even go first!

Sunshine means a great cup of coffee! #SuiteSunshine


The Suite Sunshine Experience


Thank you to everyone who came and make the night an incredible experience. We will share photos and videos soon!

Mark your calendars to join us for this amazing experience! See theatrical performances, live testimonials, videos, all to bring awareness for the Sunshine Hospitality Home! This is a free, family-friendly event and we can’t wait to see you there!

Thursday, April 23 at 6:00pm

Grand Forks Central High School Theatre Department in Grand Forks, North Dakota

The Suite Sunshine Experience, presented by Sunshine Memorial Foundation in collaboration with Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals, is a free performance to raise awareness for the need of a hospitality home in our area.

This home will be built in Grand Forks, near medical facilities, and will seek to provide low or no cost housing options to patient families, their caregivers or in cases of extended therapy or treatment, even the patient themselves.

Please consider joining us for a night to remember. Doors open at 6:00pm with the performance beginning at 7:00pm. Snacks and drinks will be provided prior to the performance.

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