Building for the Future and Impacting Lives’ Fundraising Banquet

NEWPORT, ARK — Arkansas Center for Independence (ACI) announced today that the non-profit organization will host ‘Building for the Future and Impacting Lives’ Fundraising Banquet, Tuesday, September 20 at 6 p.m. at the Newport County Club with special guest and keynote speaker, Charles Balentine. Balentine is a former Newport resident, a 2013 Inductee into the Arkansas Razorback Basketball Hall of Honor, and a former NBA Player for the Sacramento Kings. ACI invites local community leaders and individual donors to the exclusive fundraising event.
Glenda Rutledge-May, ACI Executive Director said, “We are so excited to have Charles Balentine return home and headline our event. Most people in Newport know him and the great things that he has done. I know that he will have an inspirational message for all that attend. We will also be unveiling the new building plans for the center, including the exterior look as well as renderings of the training spaces. If you have been following our progress on the building fund, this is an event you will not want to miss!”
Throughout the evening, silent and live auctions will be taking place with happy hour beginning at 5 p.m. The banquet will begin at 6 p.m., with Balentine to begin the keynote note address at 7 p.m. Seating is limited and tickets must be purchased in advance. Individual tickets for the banquet can be purchased for $30 and reserved tables can be purchased for $300. Reserved tables include 8 seats per table with seating towards the front.
For those who purchase reserved tables, your contribution will also help send four clients from ACI to the event. Tickets can be purchased at all Merchant and Planters Bank locations in Newport and Tuckerman, More Old Treasures Thrift Store in Newport, or by calling ACI. Additional ticket information can also be found on the ‘Arkansas Center for Independence’ Facebook page or at www. more information, please contact ACI at 870.523.8488 or email
ACI, formerly known as the ‘Jackson County Learning Center’ in Newport is one of the oldest non-profits in the state whose mission is to provide supports and services for adults with developmental disabilities such as Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, and Autism. The Center’s building was built in 1959 and is now in disrepair. All money raised for this event will be used to benefit the building fund for a new facility.