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New church in the ‘Spirit of Giving’

Arts and crafts festival will feature local artists, raise funds for charity
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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When Cynthia Pursell moved to Roseville about a year ago, she immediately fell in love with the city. She wanted to learn as much as she could about her new community — not far from her previous residence in Orangevale — so she researched local schools, businesses, the economy and got acquainted with neighbors. Several months later, the nondenominational church she attends, the Family Christian Center, announced it would relocate from Orangevale, where it had been for the past 40 years, to Eureka Road in Roseville. The congregation changed its name to The Family Church, and will celebrate its grand opening Sunday. But Pursell figured out another way to introduce the church to its new community: With the help of three other volunteers, she organized the inaugural Spirit of Giving arts and crafts festival hosted by the church Saturday, Nov. 20. The event will feature one-of-a-kind creations just in time for holiday shopping and proceeds benefit three local charities. “It was on my heart: What can we do for our community?” Pursell said. “We wanted to partner with charities that already exist. We want to support our community. We don’t want to reinvent the wheel.” She put her outreach skills to the test, recruiting businesses to sponsor the event, finding artists and identifying three charities in need of increased awareness and funds. “It grew and morphed into a circle of support,” Pursell said. More than 30 vendors of artists and crafters of all genres will display and sell their creations, including paintings, sculptures, photographs, holiday-themed art and crafts, antique furnishings for the home and garden, jewelry, apparel, music and more. The event features three local artists. Impressionist painter Gayle Rappaport-Weiland creates artwork using watercolor, acrylic and mixed media. She’s also a teacher, curator and juror of gallery shows. She will donate 30 percent of proceeds from sales of her original art during the event and through Jan. 30 to the charities. Artist Suzette Allen, who creates photographic images of spiritual principles, and Judi Dains, who makes quilts and wearable art, will also donate 30 percent of event proceeds. Allen will donate an additional 30 percent from sales of her artwork through Dec. 31. One of the lucky recipients is Courage House, a resource provided by Courage to be You, Inc. This Rocklin-based organization seeks to rescue and restore children exploited or sold for sex. One house opened unofficially in May with two girls — now adults — who will become peer mentors once the organization receives a group home license. The organization hopes to build cottages on 52 acres of land to accomodate up to 70 children. Courage House will provide a safe living environment for emotional and spiritual healing, said volunteer marketing director Danielle Jones. She said Spirit of Giving will be “huge” for the organization. “The awareness part is really big,” Jones said. “Most people understand that human trafficking and sex trafficking happens in the world, but it was shocking to me to find out it’s happening right here in my community.” Proceeds will also go to the United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Sacramento’s Saddle Pals Therapeutic Center. The organization runs a center in Orangevale and Grass Valley, where people with disabilities participate in horseback riding and other activities to promote independence and improved quality of life. Saddle Pals serves clients ages 4 years and older, and serves 65 people each week at its two facilities. Through the program, participants increase their balance, attention span, vocabulary, self-esteem and sense of responsibility, according to a United Cerebral Palsy annual report. The Family Community Outreach Programs will be the third recipient of event proceeds. Programs include offering academic assistance to at-risk youth and the Club Retro all-ages music venue, which recently opened in Rosevile. As for Pursell, she eagerly awaits the big day that took three months in the making and is now only a week away. “I’ve never done anything like this before,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to seeing the event come together. It’s going to be festive. I’m going to stand back, mingle (with people) and see it come to life.” Sena Christian can be reached at senac@goldcountrymedia.com. ---------- What: Spirit of Giving: Arts and crafts festival hosted by The Family Church When: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 20 Where: 1529 Eureka Road in Roseville Cost: Free Info: Visit www.riverlife.net or www.spiritofgiving.smugmug.com