The Down Syndrome Association of Central Texas hosted their annual Share the Passion Calendar Gala on Saturday, September 14, 2013 at Antebellum Oaks in Austin. The annual fundraising event and celebration launched the dsACT’s 2014 calendar, which features 12 children with Down syndrome who are part of the dsACT community. Each of them is paired with a celebrity or local dignitary who shares their passions, be it singing, dancing, sailing, or other activities as part of the calendar theme. The Gala started with the calendar models arriving by limo and getting star treatment, including a walk down the red carpet with cheering admirers and photographers.
This year’s list of celebrities paired with the calendar models included Blue October, The Derailers, Kirk Dressendorfer, John Frick, Sheriff Greg Hamilton, The Imagination Movers, Russell Korman, Michael Raiford, Bandi Sansom, Jerry Sisemore, Kathy Valentine, and Senator Judith Zaffirini. The gala featured guest of honor Tim Harris as co-emcee for the event, along with YNN’s Mary Wasson. Check out our Examiner slideshow for exclusive photos from the Calendar Gala.
Photographer Bill Ledbetter took the photos of celebrities and individuals with Down syndrome sharing their passions together for the 2013 calendar. The goal of the calendar is to raise awareness of how individuals with Down syndrome are ‘more alike than different’ than anyone else. In the calendar, you’ll see Matthew dancing with Disney’s Imagination Movers, Adele singing with Kathy Valentine from the band, The Go Go’s, and Alex sailing on Lake Travis with NFL player, Jerry Sisemore. Proceeds from the gala and calendar sales help DSACT to continue providing programs and services to individuals and families in Central Texas. You can order a calendar from the DSACT website.