Wood River Health hosted our 3rd Annual Harvest for Health Gala on September 22, 2023 to celebrate our 47th anniversary. The gala was held at the Venice Restaurant in Westerly and live music was performed by Take it to the Bridge. The event raised over $97,000 for our community health center.

Presenters included Regan Pennypacker, Wood River Health’s Board Chair; Alison Croke, President and CEO of Wood River Health; and Peter Marino, President and CEO of Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island. Each spoke to the efforts Wood River Health has made to increase patient access to high quality health care programs and support services.

During the event program, Alison Croke announced that Wood River Health has partnered with Block Island Health Services (BIHS) to increase oral health care access for Block Island residents. BIHS is considered a rural health center due to its distance from the mainland. Currently, dental care for residents who are Medicaid beneficiaries or are under- or uninsured has only been available by traveling off island. Wood River Health’s presence at BIHS will increase access to oral health care to all island residents.

The gala was supported through many generous sponsorships made by community partners, local businesses and members of the Board of Directors. Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island served as Harvest for Health’s Presenting Sponsor. Professional Planning Group served at the Over the Harvest Moon level.

The event's Earth’s Bounty Sponsors included CliftonLarsonAllen, East Side Clinical Laboratory, Genoa Healthcare, Integrated Healthcare Partners, Office Concepts, RI Media Group, UnitedHealthcare, Vision 3 Architects and Westerly Hospital - Yale New Haven Health. Sponsorship funding raised $56,000 for Wood River Health.

During the speaking program, a heartfelt testimony was delivered by Don P., a long-time patient of Wood River Health. In a prerecorded video, Don stated how Wood River Health’s Dental Health Services made a positive impact on his life. The video presentation was developed by PMC Media Group, who also sponsored the event.

Michael McCarten, DO, MPH, a Wood River Health provider, served as the event’s auctioneer. Dr. McCarten is a 1983 graduate of the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine whose Naval career spanned 30-years career that led to travel to 24 countries across five continents. Dr. McCarten helped raise over $16,000 in live auction and Raise the Paddle proceeds. The funds generated by the Raise the Paddle will support Wood River Health’s new dental program at Block Island Health Services, which will open in January 2024.

Guests were invited to participate in a Wine Surprise Raffle, where they received a bottle of wine and a gift card up to $100 in exchange for a $47 donation. Gift cards were donated by local businesses and wine was donated by Hopkinton Liquor Depot, Wakefield Liquors and The Wine Store. The Wine Surprise portion of the fundraiser raised over $2,000 for Wood River Health.

Patceez Home Garden Center donated over 20 mums that decorated the tables and added to the harvest theme of the event. Event program and signage were designed by LDM Designs.

The event was orchestrated by members of the Harvest for Health Gala Committee and was chaired by Board Vice Chair Dan Fitzgerald. Committee members included Daniel Fitzgerald, Committee Chair Sue Brough, Former Board Member; Sarah Channing, Director of Development & Communications; Laura Courtemanche; Alison Croke, President & CEO; Jennifer Madden, Marketing & Communications Specialist; Peggy Marcotte, Executive Assistant to CEO; Kathleen Marra; Dayna Mendolia, Marketing & Events Coordinator; and Kate Porter, Board Member.

Photos of Harvest for Health’s attendees were taken by Yamuna Smith Photography and can be viewed on Wood River Health's Facebook page. Event Sponsors and donors are listed below.

Save the Date for our 4th Annual Harvest for Health Gala, which will take place on Thursday, September 26, 2024 at Shepherd's Run in South Kingstown.

Wood River Health Thanks Our 2023 Auction and Raffle Donors