Guests who walk into Wrightsville United Methodist Church Aug. 15 will forego their Sunday best in favor of their most comfortable dancing shoes for a concert by Artistry in Jazz. The 20-member orchestra will play hits from the 1920s through the 1970s in a concert to benefit Wrightsville UMC’s outreach program.
Mikki Perry, director of congregational care, said the 2014 program will live up to last year’s event, which featured a great female vocalist.
“They play big band and swing music,” Perry said during an Aug. 8 phone interview. “It was a lot of fun.”
Proceeds from ticket sales will go to a wide range of outreach projects supported by Wrightsville UMC. Hayes Perry, director of United Methodist Men, said fundraising is a vital part of the church’s mission.
“I’ve heard somebody say, don’t preach me a sermon, live me a sermon,” Perry said. “To give to other people and to help other people in need is what being a Christian and being a good person is all about.”
The 2013 Artistry in Jazz Big Band Concert raised $1,100 for charity and organizers now hope to top that number.
In addition to the Artistry in Jazz fundraiser, the church also holds an annual golf tournament and a fish fry to raise money. In the past, much of the proceeds from these events went to the Methodist Home for Children, a Raleigh-based organization that helps find foster homes for children in need.
Perry said the funds could also benefit a variety of other projects, depending on where the need is. In previous years, the church has donated money to Eagle Scout projects, community members at Christmastime and W.A.R.M, a nonprofit organization in Wilmington that repairs the houses of low-income homeowners.
Perry said many of the outreach projects focus on helping children in need.
“There was one kid who had behavioral problems, and we went in to the home and the family didn’t have sheets on the bed and the kid only had one outfit to wear, so we gave money for them to buy him clothes,” he offered as one example.
The concert will include homemade desserts during intermission.
“I make homemade banana pudding,” Perry said. “It’s the best banana pudding you’ve ever tasted.”
Tickets can be purchased for $10 and picked up at the WUMC office. For more information, visit www.wrightsvilleumc.org