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posted: 4/29/2010 12:01 AM

Artist organizes wine tasting and art sale fundraiser

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  • "Rose Fantasy" by Donna Faye is among the artwork to be featured at The Art of Giving Friday in St. Charles.

      "Rose Fantasy" by Donna Faye is among the artwork to be featured at The Art of Giving Friday in St. Charles.


The detours in life offer roadblocks to some, but define the journey for others.

"When I graduated from high school I wanted to go to the Art Institute and study art," said Catie Barron. "I just didn't have the money to be able to do it at the time."

Like many, Barron chose a career that seemed more stable and went to college and eventually got a job working at a bank. After a bout with cancer, she re-evaluated her life and decided to return to her original desire to be an artist. She enrolled at the School of the Art Institute and found her passion.

"I went to the Discovery Ball in Chicago which is a fund-raise for the American Cancer Society," the Evanston resident said. "They had a gallery of art on display for auction and I thought that could be an area where I could help."

This past year she ended up acting as curator for the event, opening a new avenue that brought her to TriCity Family Services.

She will be the curator for the organization's fundraiser, The Art of Giving, set for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, April 30 at the Wine Exchange in St. Charles. Tickets, $20-$25, are available by calling (630) 232-1070.

Those who attend will have the opportunity to sample outstanding wine and purchase art from local artists.

"We have 11 artists from Water Street Studios in Batavia who are participating," said Barron. "And the art is amazing."

Barron will be bringing one of her oil paintings as well. There will be quite a mix from intricate jewelry designs to paintings in a variety of media and photography.

"Artists are often asked to donate their work to different fundraisers," said Batavia photographer, Brian DeWolf. "I wanted to do this because I know how important TriCity Family Services is to our community."

DeWolf previously worked as an officer on the St. Charles police force. He remembers cases being referred to the local social service agency.

"Often the people who needed the help didn't have the money to pay," he added. "I think it's important to help those who need help and this is a way I can support them."

Tri City Family Services offers a variety of services from early intervention programs to anger management. Although the agency serves all ages and all income levels, most are children and adolescents. The group has a sliding fee scale for those without insurance or the means to pay, but there is often a waiting list. Like many social service agencies, when the economy is down, funding goes down as well, but the demand for services goes up.

"We are so grateful to the Friends of TriCity Family Services and the Wine Exchange for hosting the event," said Miranda Barfuss of TriCity Family Services. "And to all of the artists at Water St Studios for their generous contributions."

Donna Faye Evenson of Geneva appreciates all that TriCity Family Services does for the community. She is a former nurse who still is involved in alternative medicine. She began painting as a hobby and continued with it.

Her art has a calming, soothing effect.

"I think most nurses have this desire to nurture people and to make them feel better," she said. "Even in my art I try to do that. Being involved in something for TriCity Family services is a part of that, a way to give back."

Other participating artists include Jim Jenkins, sculptor; Lisa Dienst-Thomas, jeweler; Fred Ullrich, photographer; Sharon Sychta, pastel painter; Steven Lockwood, sculptor; Katherine Kratzer, jeweler; Gina Floro, painter; and Caroline Baty-Barr, potter.

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