Skip to Main Content
Skip Navigation Links

Press Room & News Giving News

An Elegant Evening Set Apart by Generosity

Harvest Ball raises more than $550,000 for Children's Hospital Central California


Children's Hospital Central California Foundation hosted the 15th annual Harvest Ball for a sold-out crowd of hundreds of the most generous people the Hospital is privileged to know.

Harvest Ball entrance“We raised $25,000 in three minutes,” said Sarah Schmidt, development coordinator for the Foundation, of the unexpected and overwhelming opening to the Fund-an-Item program during dinner. “The generosity just blows me away.”

The date of the Harvest Ball marked the end of the $42 million Campaign for Children’s, a massive fundraising initiative that began two years ago. A kick-off event was held in October 2009 at the Paramount Farms Plaza construction site. During the ceremony, Bill and Linda Smittcamp, co-chairs of The Campaign for Children’s, talked about their own moving experiences at Children’s Hospital following their son’s near-fatal accident. 

Smittcamp family“It was March 7, 1993 when Children’s Hospital became a necessity and a true blessing for my family,” said Bill at the time. “My son Bradley and I, along with Linda and Blair, were on a beautiful Sunday afternoon bike ride that turned into a horrendous chapter in our lives. Bradley and I were hit from behind by a drunk motorcycle rider going in excess of 65 mph.”

Linda also spoke at the Campaign’s kick-off. “Suddenly I had both a husband and a son in two different hospitals,” she said. “And this hospital, this children’s hospital, saved my son’s life.”

Gordy AlexanderBradley, a 5-year-old at the time of the accident, joined his parents at the Harvest Ball to recount his experiences as a patient over 18 years ago. His presence reminded the attendees of the long-term benefits of their generosity.

Dr. Gordy Alexander, president and chief executive officer of Children's Hospital Central California, honored Bill and Linda for their service as Campaign co-chairs. As he introduced and thanked them for giving their time, talent and treasure to make the Campaign a huge success, the crowd of Harvest Ball dinnerover 600 supporters burst into animated applause.

Bill expressed his thanks and appreciation as well, as he announced the final tally in the Campaign. Over $42.8 million – including funds raised the night of the Harvest Ball – was contributed to support the lifesaving work of Children's Hospital Central California.

From the moment the attendees arrived to a warm greeting and a glass of champagne to the time they left with a bag of fresh peaches and Wine tasting tableseveral special party favors, the Foundation pulled out all the stops to show appreciation for their overwhelming support. The Hospital depends on the generous donations of our contributors to carry out our mission to provide high-quality healthcare services to children, regardless of their ability to pay, and to continuously improve the health and wellbeing of children.

Together the sponsorship packages and Story Album advertisements garnered $327,000 for the Hospital, and the live and silent auctions with the Fund-an-item gifts raised $223,000. Thank you to all who made the Harvest Ball such a huge success.

Thank You to our Premier Sponsors!

$25,000 presenting sponsors:

  • Table Mountain Rancheria
  • Wawona Frozen Foods, Inc.
  • Wells Fargo
  • Western Milling

$15,000 dinner sponsors:

  • Paramount Citrus

$10,000 harvest sponsors:

  • Fresno Lexus
  • Jeff and Melanie Mayer
  • Kubo Orthodontic Group and Merrill Lynch
  • Producers Dairy
  • Trinity Fruit Sales

Thank You to the Wineries:

  • Arada Winery – Paso Robles
  • Henson Winery – Arroyo Grande
  • Hoffman Family Cellars – Sonoma
  • Justin Winery – Paso Robles
  • Katin Winery – Paso Robles
  • Novy Winery – Sonoma Valley
  • Patz & Hall Winery – Sonoma
  • Saintsbury Winery – Napa Valley
  • Siduri Winery – Sonoma
  • Zaca Mesa Winery Santa Ynez Valley – Santa Barbara
  • ZD Winery – Napa Valley

Special Thanks:

  • Bill and Linda Smittcamp
  • Bradley Smittcamp
  • Brad Bell
  • Cupcakes Bakery
  • Finch's Topiary Zoo
  • Fresno State Quartet
  • Grant Snyder
  • Jim Bradley
  • KSB Company
  • Lou Gentile's Flower Basket
  • Media Solutions, Inc.
  • Pardini's
  • Patioworld
  • Sigma Chi
  • Warren Armstrong
  • Willow Gardens