On April 7th to the 9th I had the opportunity to be a part of the Great Falls, Montana “Celebrate the Night” event. I arrived in Great Falls early on Monday and picked-up my rental car then went to my hotel to settle in. I called my contact person Autum Frey to let her know I had arrived safely and was really excited about the events of the following day. I woke up the next morning approximately 0530 and turned on the news. I heard the newscaster say that, “be careful on your drive this morning there are up to 6 foot snow drifts in some areas”, immediately I looked out my hotel room window which was facing the Missouri River and saw a winter wonderland in front of me. The water from where I stood was raging and the ground was completely covered with snow. Yes, something I don’t normally have the chance to to be in, living in California.
I arrived at the YWCA around 11:00 a.m. as they were setting-up and preparing a wonderful luncheon for members of the community and board members of the YWCA. The guest speaker for the luncheon was their own local news anchor Katie Stuckey. It was enjoyable to hear her speak and why she got into journalism and how much she supports working to make change. After the luncheon she interviewed me for the evening news regarding the evening event. I then went to the hall where the event was to held and attempted to assist in setting-up and ensuring the DVD worked properly. It was time to return to my hotel and get ready for the evening. I arrived back at the hall, ready to set-up my table of information. The snow had slowed to almost a stop but it was becoming increasingly chilly. I was so excited about the event as I would have the opportunity not only to share Sin By Silence with this amazing community but also be the one who was handing the award recipients their awards. What an honor for me on all accounts, as the ladies and gentlemen stepped-up to receive their awards after having dinner, watching the film, then hearing me speak, it was like magic. The smiles of accomplishment on their faces truly touched my heart, not to mention the resounding clapping as the recipients walked up to receive their respective awards. I do not cease to be amazed at all of the effort to make a difference in the arenas of Sexual Assault, Child Abuse and Domestic Violence, that a Community working together can accomplish. To put into words now,what this all meant to me that evening, I will be forever touched by the lives who touched mine that night. Thank you all for allowing me to be part of such an awesome event. I would love to return some time in the future, hope to see you all again. Keep up the awesome work!