Guests of the Festival of Chairs talked, listened to music and enjoyed food and drinks during the Friday night event at Centennial Valley Events Center. Co-chairs of the event Laura Simpson and Lori Quinn said several hundred people were in attendance. 

Quinn said more tickets were pre-sold for the event than in previous years.

While guests mixed and mingled, a video about the accomplishments of Court Appointed Special Advocates of the 20th Judicial District played in the background along with the sounds of the Rodney Block Project. The cocktail hour, which began at 6 p.m., featured Marty Lefler, Cat Hood and Chuck Gilbert as the entertainment.

The Festival of Chairs has become CASA’s signature event that showcases the work of outstanding artists who have taken a neglected chair and brought it back to life, similar to what CASA advocates do every day.

"They find a chair and make it look new," Simpson said. "They restore the chairs and bring new life into them like our advocates do with the children."

Other fundraising efforts during the event included the Bubbly and Baubles raffle for a Konstantino pendant donated by Fletcher Smith’s Jewelers with an estimated value of $2,800.

"It is a nice item, and it attracts a lot of people," Simpson said.

Many of the chairs were included in a live auction also offering several trips, items and event parties. 

Quinn said the party packages included a Derby party, a poolside party and even shopping parties.

Both Quinn and Simpson thanked the businesses, restaurants and sponsors who participated in the event. 

Quinn especially thanked the restaurateurs who brought food and their staff to present food items to the guests.

State Rep. Linda Tyler and her husband Hugh have been named honorary chairpersons of the 8th annual CASA Festival of Chairs.

Hugh Tyler is a retired vice president from Virco Mfg., and Linda Tyler is the State Representative for District 45 in Conway and a retired executive from Acxiom Corporation.  Their longtime support for the community includes First United Methodist Church, Conway Regional Medical System Foundation and Women’s Council, UCA Foundation, Purple Circle Club, United Way of Central Arkansas, Faulkner County Library, National Kidney Foundation, Conway Chamber of Commerce and Leadership Arkansas of the State Chamber. 

In the Legislature, Linda serves on the Education, State Agencies, Lottery Oversight, Legislative Council and Rules committees.  She currently serves as vice-chair of the Higher Education sub-committee of the Legislative Council. 

Mallory Harden of Channel 4 and Justice of the Peace Johnnie Wells served as the masters of ceremony for the event. 

For more information, visit the CASA Web site at www.casa20th.org or call 328-3347. CASA in the 20th judicial district services children in Faulkner, Van Buren and Searcy counties.