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Worship concert “Illuminate” to benefit Kids' Closet

By Amanda Browning, Greensburg Daily News, Ind.
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

March 08--GREENSBURG -- The Kids' Closet of Decatur County has announced an upcoming fundraising concert called Illuminate at 6 p.m. on April 12, at the Greensburg Junior High School auditorium.

Illuminate will be a worship concert appropriate for all ages. Local musicians will perform a variety of worship music and the evening will conclude with a message from Jon Porter to raise awareness of the Kids' Closet's mission, as well as to raise funds. The concert is expected to end around 8 p.m.

The band members include Brad Sefton, Rachel Harter, Brian Poling, Steve Wills, Mark Burkert, Matt Weimer, and John Barton. The set list will be mostly contemporary worship music, though there will be a short set of hymns.

"Illuminate will be a great night for a great cause. We have a great band, a great speaker, many great volunteers, and an amazing God to praise! It'll be so amazing to feel the presence of The Lord dwell in the atmosphere as we praise His Name," said event organizer Alex Sefton.

Tickets to the Illuminate concert are currently on sale at a cost of $5 per person. Children under the age of five are free. Refreshments will be available for $1, which includes a snack and drink. The funds raised at the concert will be used to fund the continuance of the Kids' Closet of Decatur County.

The Kids' Closet was founded by Sue and Jerry Abplanalp in 2012, with the mission to provide free new and gently used clothing to area children. Many area churches have joined in to assist with the ministry, further spreading the help available to struggling families.

The motto of the Kids' Closet is a simple one: "All children deserve to feel special." The non-profit organization was founded on this belief and it continues to operate with the goal of ensuring that all children feel self-confident in their school and community. According to the Kids' Closet co-founder Sue Abplanalp, sometimes that goal can be accomplished with just one special outfit.

Throughout the year, Kids' Closet holds "shopping days" where parents may bring their children to pick out several new-to-them pieces of clothing. High school volunteers, often from the GCHS cheerleading squad, assist the children with their "shopping" and parents get to take home happy children without spending a cent. There are also shoes, new underwear and new socks available for each child. In the winter, there are options for children who do not have adequate coats as well.

Sue was a teacher herself, so she knows first-hand how much impact a new, nice outfit can have on a child's day. She told the Daily News that she's been contacted by more than one teacher to comment on the differences seen in children who'd visited the Kids' Closet.

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While ever-growing attendance numbers at each Kids' Closet "shopping day" show the need in Decatur County growing at an alarming rate, it also shows that those in need the most are getting help. The economic downturn hurt many families and new clothing is often not considered a necessity and is one of the first things cut from a stretched budget. Through the generosity of the Kids' Closet and the many people who have donated time, money and gently used clothing, parents are able to get new clothes for their kids without hurting the family's finances.

Abplanalp hopes to eventually grow the Kids' Closet enough to have its own building. Originally housed in the basement of the First Christian Church, the organization is now hosted in the gymnasium at City Hall. Since obtaining non-profit status last year, the Kids' Closet is currently seeking grants that would help improve supplies, shelving and the search for a permanent location.

The Kids' Closet wished to extend a special thanks to its corporate sponsors, Designed Sound, Don Meyer Ford, Farmers Insurance Wentzel Agency, O'Mara Foods and Levenstein's Carpet, as well as everyone who has donated their time and money to make the Kids' Closet ministry successful.

The organization is always looking for sponsors, whose donations allow the Kids' Closet to purchase more clothes to give to the children of the community. There are four levels of sponsorship, with different donations and benefits for each level.

For questions or comments about the Illuminate concert or sponsorship inquiries, please contact Alex Sefton, Kids' Closet event director and sponsorship coordinator, at 812-614-7690, or at

Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004;


(c)2014 the Greensburg Daily News (Greensburg, Ind.)

Visit the Greensburg Daily News (Greensburg, Ind.) at

Distributed by MCT Information Services



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