Supporting a great cause is a good thing; having a fabulous time doing so, well, what could be better? On March 31, Better Health hosts A Touch of Class, an elegant 15th Annual Evening at the Theater.

Each year local performer and Better Health supporter, Cassandra Vallery spends hours creating a show for this fundraiser. When Better Health Executive Director, Judy Klinck first talked to Vallery about how to make the fundraiser better she was really just hoping Vallery would agree to sing a song during dinner. Instead, she got a whole show.

The theme is different every year, and the show is performed only once. Klinck describes the format as almost a cabaret show, in that there is not much talking and the performers move from one number right into the next. It’s always elegant, but this year, Vallery has focused on an especially sparkly time in entertainment history.03-21-12-better-health.jpg

“What Cassandra wanted to do this year is go back to the early days of movies,” said Klinck. “She is highlighting the big-band era and the days of elegant movies where every starlet wore a fancy gown.”

While Vallery puts in the hours creating the show, there are several performers who donate their time and talent as well. This year, people attending the show can look forward to seeing local favorites Greg King, Jenny Beaver, Molly Griggs and Mary Mattison Vallery.

“This event has evolved over the years,” said Klinck. “Cassandra and a number of local performers have been so generous with their time. It is a one-night show, and as you can imagine, it takes many hours and they usually have other jobs … I am constantly in awe at the generosity of the community and the people who support Better Health.”

Held at the Highland Country Club, Evening at the Theater starts at 7 p.m. with heavy hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. The show runs from 8-9 p.m. and is followed by coffee and dessert from 9-10 p.m.

Proceeds from this event benefit Better Health, whose mission is to provide for the unmet healthcare needs of Cumberland County residents through assistance, referral and education.

“We help folks in general who are uninsured or not fully insured,” said Klinck. “But our diabetes clinics are open to everyone, at no charge.”

Klinck pointed out that Better Health has been open since 1958. “We have been supported almost entirely by the county and it generous citizens — either through United Way or directly to us. In one way or another we have churches and businesses that support us, too. It all comes from the generous pockets of people and businesses in our community. I am always in awe of the generosity of the people in this community.”

Reservations can be made by calling Better Health at 483-7534 or at the website www.betterhealthcc.org.

Photo: Cassandra Vallery has put together an elegant show that shines a spotlight on the early days of moving pictures. The show features big band music. 

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