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May 24, 2014

Three Norman Rotary clubs ready for Le Tour de Vin

NORMAN — Three of Norman’s Rotary clubs — the Cross Timbers, Norman and Sooner — will gather together again for Le Tour de Vin, a benefit for local charities and Rotary projects.

This year’s beneficiary is the Center for Children and Families.

A two-day wine festival will begin June 6, with a wine and dine at the home of Bridgit Finley and Dana Martin.

The event will conclude June 7 at the Riverwind Casino Showplace Theatre, with a tasting of more than 200 wines and a live and silent auction. Both are ticketed events.

A dozen years ago, Craig Stephens of the Cross Timbers Rotary Club originated the concept to support local charities.

The first event, hosted at Belmar Golf Club, raised $18,000 with 30 volunteers.

Le Tour de Vin has netted $762,000 during the last 12 years. Beneficiaries have included the American Red Cross, ILSY, now Bridges, Mary Abbott Children’s House, Thunderbird Clubhouse, Food and Shelter and the current recipient, Center for Children and Families. In addition, Rotary clubs have used these funds to support smaller special projects at other nonprofits.

To commemorate a dozen years of Le Tour de Vin, Craig and Markie Stephens have donated a rare bottle of a 1996 Chateau Lafite Rothschild.

Only 100 tickets are being sold at $50 per ticket, available through the Center for Children and Families or a local Rotarian.

For many years, CCFI has helped children and families become emotionally healthier and stronger.

Rotary funds will be used to renovate a children’s therapeutic area and develop an outdoor therapeutically oriented playground.

A design committee of CCFI staff and Rotarians are collaborating on the design of the playground, which has a completion date of late summer or early fall.

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