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Frank and Georgia Lemmon's youngest son Frankie was born with Down syndrome. In the 1960's when Frankie was kindergarten age, there was no preschool in the Raleigh area that would enroll a child with a disability. In 1965 the congregation of Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church, where Frank was the minister, came together to create the area's first pre-school kindergarten for children with special education needs. Over the years, the school grew and a non-profit organization was formed. The Frankie Lemmon School today is recognized for its highly trained teaching staff which provides children with an individualized experience that places special emphasis on communication skills and personal independence.
In the early 1990's a group of friends gathered to celebrate their love of wine and to raise money for the Frankie Lemmon School. The gathering became a tradition that eventually resulted in the formation of The Frankie Lemmon Foundation, a non-profit organization that is the school's primary funding source. Each year the foundation organizes a series of wine related charitable events, including the Triangle Wine Experience to generate proceeds which fund the tuition-free school.
In 2011, the Frankie Lemmon School and Developmental Center embarked on a significant expansion so that more of the growing number of special needs children can benefit from the school's unique educational and developmental programs that provide a foundation for growth, independence, and success. Please join us as we continue the legacy of Frank Lemmon who so clearly understood the joy that comes from helping others.
Gala attendees will have an opportunity to donate to Frankie Lemmon School during the Live Auction’s Paddle Raise.