Last night, the Arizona branch of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) held a press conference and cocktail party at the Hermosa Inn to announce the results of a three-year study funded with state dollars. Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh, CARD’s founder and Executive Director, came to Phoenix from their California headquarters, and was joined by a number of Arizona dignitaries that supported the funding at its inception.
The Hermosa Inn is one of my absolute favorite favorite places in Arizona…and is a dreamy place to photograph. Last night we were blessed by lovely fall-Arizona-sunset light; an overall beautiful evening for a meaningful celebration.
The Hermosa was once the studio of painter Alonzo Megargee (“Lon” – hence the restaurant’s name pictured above). The hotel’s decor and ambience honor this history.
Did you know that one of Lon’s famous images is inside every authentic Stetson hat? Okay, back to the party! Of course, you know me – I couldn’t resist snapping pics of the food!
After the official press conference, guests mingled outside and munched on the above goodies while the sun sank lower.
A couple of CARD staff in attendance from California wanted a photo with a cactus (above right)! Their first trip to Arizona. 🙂 While other guests celebrated, a couple of the families that participated in the three year study were interviewed in the Lon’s wine cellar. Can you believe how cool this place is?
The Song family, below, were among the guests of honor. How cute is this silliness?
I had a hard time focusing on work at this event, because it was such a reunion for me with old friends. I once worked at another autism organization so I know many of the same people. The autism community is a small world! It was so fun to see everyone and celebrate the successes of the past few years.
Congratulations to CARD and their families and kiddos that have worked so hard to produce data showing that children can in fact makes steps towards conquering the symptoms of autism. Someday we’ll look back and say “remember when people had autism?”
Can’t wait for that day! Keep up the good work! And everyone remember to support families struggling with this disorder. It’s tough work, but there’s so much hope!