Bel Air, Md., September 8, 2014 — Despite threatening weather, a crowd of approximately 250 people attended “Shining a Light on Recovery,” a free family event and candlelight vigil, on September 6 in Shamrock Park in Bel Air.
The event, sponsored by The Albert P. Close Foundation in partnership with Addiction Connection Resources and the Homecoming Project, was held to raise awareness about substance abuse and to remove the stigma associated with addiction.
Activities included a performance by Steve Gambrill, the “Extreme” Balloon Man and master magician, and a screening of the documentary, “Anonymous People.” Also on hand were local organizations that offer services for the prevention and treatment of drug/alcohol addiction.
The concluding event was a candlelight vigil led by Pastor Craig McLaughlin from Mt. Zion Methodist Church in Bel Air. A video presentation in memory of those who have died as a result of an addiction was also shown.
“To witness the large number of people who came to stand in solidarity with us the evening of September 6 was amazing. To say that I’m thankful for their support would be an understatement,” said Carol Frontera, president of The Albert P. Close Foundation and organizer of the event. “It is my hope and the hope of many that we continue to come together as a community committed to removing the stigma surrounding addiction and save lives.”
The Close Foundation was established in 2002 in memory of the late judge, Albert P. Close, who during his long and distinguished career served as an attorney and as a judge of the Circuit Court for Harford County (1967-86). He was vitally interested in the welfare and success of young people. Over the past 12 years the Close Foundation has worked to help “close the gap” between need and existing resources by raising and distributing funds to give Harford County’s troubled youth—particularly those fighting alcohol and drug abuse—hope for their futures.
For more information about the Close Foundation, visit closefoundation.org or the organization’s Facebook page at facebook.com/CloseFoundation.