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SARRC Celebrates Swirl, Sip and Savor, Raises More Than $500,000

SARRC's Fourth Annual Swirl, Sip and Savor

On Friday, March 18, SARRC hosted its fourth Swirl, Sip and Savor event at the Royal Palms Resort & Spa to raise awareness and funds for Think Autism®, a program that aims to identify subtle social challenges in children, as well as other early intervention initiatives at SARRC.  
The biennial event raised more than $500,000 to support the expansion and maintenance of the Think Autism program and its mobile app integration; serve families through SARRC’s free Family Orientations; as well as deploy additional outreach initiatives to raise awareness and education around autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
SARRC hosted nearly 200 guests who enjoyed tastings from premier California wineries and a one-of-a-kind dining experience featuring Chef Matt Carter of Fat Ox, Mission and Zinc Bistro; Chef Mark Tarbell of Tarbell’s; Chef Lee Hillson of Royal Palms Resort & Spa; and Chef Lance Whipple of Noble Bread. Guests also had the chance to participate in a live auction featuring unique wine experiences from Amuse Bouche, August West Wine, Barnett Vineyards, Black Cat Vineyard, DAOU Vineyards, Fulldraw Vineyard, Hope Family Wines, PEJU Winery and ZD Wines. 
Highlights: Since 2014, Swirl, Sip and Savor funds have allowed SARRC to: 

  • Update, improve and expand the functionality of the Think Autism (formerly ThinkAsperger's) mobile app. To date, there have been over 13,000 downloads from more than 20 countries. Now, families, healthcare professionals, educators across the U.S. can complete the integrated screening questionnaire for free and be directed to resources within their local communities.  
  • Create a partnership with Great Hearts Academies to provide the program's universal screening questionnaire for every 2nd, 4th, and 8th-grade student network-wide. SARRC has screened over 3,000 students.  
  • Partner with VirTra, a global provider of training simulators for law enforcement, to develop a training intended for police officers to help identify signs of autism and interact with people on the spectrum. This training meets the criteria for continuing education for police officers in 37 states and is now available in more than 55 locations in Arizona, over 600 in the U.S., and in 40 different countries.  

A special thank you to SARRC's Swirl, Sip & Savor founder and longtime SARRC supporter, Patty Dion, and event chairs, Laura and Mike Bill; the event committee; chefs and vintners who donated their time and talents; and the event sponsors including MJ Insurance, The Arizona Cardinals, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, Ewing York Foundation, Hochuli Family, Grace Walker Charitable Fund/Adam Tuton, Greenberg Traurig Hensley Beverage Company, and Snell & Wilmer.

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