See how Champagne & Ribs benefits Gift of Life’s Men’s Health & Prostate Cancer Program

Published 12:06 am Sunday, March 12, 2023

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More than 1,350 guests joined Gift of Life’s posse to give prostate cancer the boot at Champagne & Ribs: Ponderosa Party of the Year raising more than $400,000 to benefit the organization’s Men’s Health & Prostate Cancer Program.

The occasion also served as an opportunity to recognize five exceptional individuals and champions of Gift of Life’s cause – the Cartwright Crew of Honorees: Bishop Emeritus Curtis J. Guillory, Brad Klein, William “Bill” Scott, J. Mitchell Smith and Maestro Chelsea Tipton.

“We are proud to have participated as honorees at Champagne & Ribs to help the organization raise funds for its free lifesaving men’s health screenings and treatment for those who cannot afford it. This important cause is essential to the health and well-being of our community.” – 2023 Cartwright Crew of Honorees.

Emceed by Jefferson County District Attorney Keith Giblin and coordinated by the Ever-Lovin’ Event Co-Chairs: Mike Roebuck, Verna Rutherford and Tim Sudela, the Bonanza-themed event featured an authentic Wild West experience complete with electric train rides; horses; a fire-juggling cowboy; casino games; a mechanical bull; viral social media sensation Oliver, the 1,600 pound Watusi bull; and the boot, scootin’ tunes of Dallas party band Party Machine presented by Emerald City.

“I am extremely grateful for the commitment of our wonderful donors and Gift of Life Executive Director Norma Sampson, a visionary who led our extraordinary staff and dedicated volunteers to create this innovative and successful event,” Founder & Chair Regina Rogers said.

Guests enjoyed a five-star gourmet menu prepared by Bando’s and other generous local restaurants and chefs.

Also, supporters participated in exciting silent and live auctions, hosted by aces-high auctioneer Scott Droddy, along with “panning for gold,” an opportunity to win a genuine one-carat diamond with a special Champagne Wall fundraiser, and a “donate a buck and try your luck” selection of casino games.

Champagne & Ribs is a “party with a cause,” with all proceeds benefiting Gift of Life Men’s Health & Prostate Cancer Program.

During June, Men’s Health Month, the organization annually provides extensive educational outreach and free prostate cancer screenings (PSA blood tests) for medically underserved Southeast Texans from seven contiguous counties at sites in Beaumont Port Arthur and Orange.

Other free medical services include blood glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure testing; Hepatitis C and HIV screenings; and consultations with medical professionals to discuss the significance of screenings and tests results.

Clients with abnormal test results are immediately navigated through treatment, as necessary.

Statistics reflect that the five-year survival rate for men whose prostate cancer is diagnosed early is nearly 100 percent.

Since 2000, Gift of Life has conducted nearly 11,000 free prostate cancer screenings and helped extend the lives of 77 men who have been diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer, along with many others whose health issues were detected at the screenings.

Last year, the organization provided the tests to nearly 500 men, the majority of whom required follow-up care.

Gift of Life is led by a board and the following Executive Committee: Linda Domino, President: Marty Craig, Vice-President; Donna Harris, Secretary; Dora Nisby, Treasurer; Paula O’Neal, Parliamentarian; and members, the Reverend Dean Calcote and Charlotte Mains.

For more information about Gift of Life’s Men’s Health & Prostate Cancer Program, contact the organization at 409-833-3663 or