Organized to help raise funds for her granddaughter, Avery's, medical bills, and to help with a new form of therapy for little ones with Cerebral Palsey, longtime Beach resident Jill McClearn has teamed up with Castaway's Bar and Grill to host a benefit Texas Hold 'Em tournament Sunday, Oct. 17, at the 7500 Estero Blvd. establishment.
"Avery is my 3.5-year-old granddaughter, diagnosed with Cerebral Palsey, and we're trying to get the money together to put her through a special intensive physical therapy course for children with neurological disorders in Pontiac, Mich.," Jill said. "Children with neurological disorders go through this therapy to help loosen up their muscles."
Diagnosed with the illness since she was an infant, grandmom Jill said Avery has been progressing rather well lately, perhaps with the help of her 14-month-old baby brother.
A Texas Hold ‘Em benefit for little local Avery Adkins, a 3.5-year-old girl diagnosed with Cerebral Palsey, will be held at Castaway’s, 7500 Estero Blvd., Sunday, Oct. 17. Above, Avery goes through horse therapy weekly. Photo courtesy BURNELL CALDWELL
"She said 'I Love You' for the second time in her life about four weeks ago," Jill said. "Since her 14-month-old brother has begun talking, she seems to have gotten a thrill with learning, too."
Little Avery has been a busy little bee lately, with her solid progression.
"She has had an uphill climb, and has horse therapy in Buckingham, riding with an assistant for one hour, which helps loosen her muscles from the warmth and movement of the horse. It definitely helps," Jill eagerly stated. "She also just started speech therapy, trying to get her to talk, and after having Botox injection therapy, to loosen up her muscles, she's now able to ride a tricycle. She's such an amazing, precious little sweetheart."
Texas Hold 'Em Benefit for Avery
When: Sunday, Oct. 17, all day raffles and live music
Poker tournament begins at 6 p.m.
Where: Castaways Bar and Grill, 7500 Estero Blvd.
What: Raffles, prizes, live music from Smokin' Bill
and Deb & the Dynamics and other guests.
Cost: For the tournament, $50 advance, $60 at door,
which includes 5,000 in chips.
All Star Lanes
Capt. Tony's Fishing Tours
Felton Ricks Electric
Glamrs Nail Spa
Key West Express
Lovers Key Resort
Mid-Island Water Sports
The Moose Club
Pete's Time Out
Print Shop, Ink
Smokin' Oyster Brewery
Snook Bight Marina
South Beach Grille
Yucatan Beach Stand
About the benefit
During the Texas Hold 'Em benefit Sunday, Oct. 17 at Castaway's, which of course, Avery and her family will appear, live music from Smokin' Bill will be heard from 1 to 3 p.m., Deb and the Dynamics from 4 to 6 p.m. and multiple musical guests in between.
Buttons the Clown will be bouncing around the event throughout the day, painting children's faces and bringing a whole lot of laughs to the poker crowd.
The actual tournament will kick off at 6 p.m., with cash and prizes awarded for first-, second- and third-place winners. The cost to enter the tournament is $50 in advance, $60 at the door, and includes 5,000 in chips. Raffles will take place all day, and Jill has been hot on the trail, collecting several fabulous prizes from our gracious local establishments, that will be available to win that day.
"Everyone's been so generous. It's just so amazing. I'm so happy to be a part of this wonderful island community," Jill said. "We want to be sure to thank Steve and Megan of Castaway's for hosting the event, Marcell with House of Cards for dealing during the event, Matanzas for donating a weekend stay for my family, so they didn't have to drive back to Cape Coral after the benefit, Jessie Titus, Daymon Utterback and everyone for coming out, donating and helping support this cause. Thank you so much!"
If interested in donating a gift to the benefit cause, visit or call the Bank of America branch near the Santini Marini Plaza, and ask to go to the "CP Kidz" not-for-profit account. Or, if you are a business wishing to donate a gift for the raffle prizes that day, call Roberta at the Bank of America, FMB branch, 463-2884.