Sunshine News

From a small group to committees

When the idea for this event first came about, it was December 2010 and Shannon’s birthday was coming up. Her family wanted to remember and celebrate her, so they decided to pull together an event. They had about five weeks to make it happen.

Now as we head into the 5th annual event the planning takes a few months instead of weeks. The planning process has also grown to involve five committees.

The Marketing & Media committee is putting together all the advertising and media. You’ll be seeing much of their work early in 2015. Don Anderson is the Marketing & Media Team Leader. He shared this about his involvement in Sunshine Fest.

1662622_698531396858494_2072232406_n“I have had the opportunity to work with the Sunshine Fest Media and Marketing team now for three years. My first introduction to the Sunshine project was when Van Larson invited Ellen and I to a meeting for the Sunshine Fest/home. From that meeting I began to realize the importance of such a facility and what it would mean to so many families both in and outside our community. I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience. I’ve met so many wonderful and enthusiastic people, who are so willing to volunteer their time, and talents to help make Sunshine Fest and the future Hospitality Home a reality. Each year I see more and more people becoming involved in the many facets of Sunshine Fest and fundraising projects as we all work on building the blessing this home will bring to so many. I want to thank everyone for their past support and participation in Sunshine Fest and hope to see you on February 7th for the 5th annual Sunshine Fest at the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Together we can make this event bigger and better than ever.” 


Talking with business partners in our community is the Sponsorship Committee. Many businesses will be supporting the event with in-kind donations or funds. Some of these businesses will also be present at the health & wellness fair. If your business would like to be involved please contact Joellen Cariveau at



There’s a group working on Raffles & Prizes and I look forward to seeing what they are putting together. Raffle tickets are currently available at the Altru Gift Shop or contact Lanette Swendseid at



Another committee of Recruitment Leaders is beginning to build teams and increase participation at the event in February. Doesn’t it look like fun to be on a Sunshine Fest team???


“I became involved with Sunshine Fest for several reasons….I have been a Labor and Delivery nurse for 29 years and have seen many families struggle with where to stay when they have a preterm baby or mom is sick and requires a longer hospital stay.  Most of the time it is unexpected and a financial burden to stay at a hotel.  I have also personally experienced this need when my husband was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer and we needed to travel 5 hours away to receive specialized care.   We received overwhelming support from our friends and neighbors during Mike’s illness and this is an opportunity for me to give back and help others who are in need.  There are so many that could benefit from a facility of this nature we need to make this a reality for our community!” – Karla Miller

Finally, overseeing all the action is an Event Logistics coordinator. You may have seen Richard Dafoe literally running in a past Sunshine Fest. This year he’ll be ‘running’ things behind the scenes.




Until next time,

Stacy Signature for blog

© Copyright - Sunshine Memorial Foundation