The Alzheimer’s Association raised more than $83,000 during its inaugural statewide Growing Hope Gala on March 19 at the Lauritzen Gardens in Omaha. The evening featured signature drinks and food donated by local restaurants and bars, live painting by local artists and a silent auction.

The inaugural 2016 Courage Award was given to Mike Hughbanks of Omaha for helping to promote a greater understating and awareness of Alzheimer’s disease, dispelling public misperceptions and moving people to take action. Hughbanks was diagnosed with Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Disease last year at the age of 58.

More than 150 people attended the event, which was also supported by a smaller satellite party in Lincoln.

The Alzheimer’s Association’s 2017 Growing Hope Gala will travel to Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln on Feb. 11, 2017, and feature a Roaring 20s theme complete with dueling pianos.

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