Light It Up Blue Aspen, benefitting autism awareness, returns for fifth year | AspenTimes.com

Light It Up Blue Aspen, benefitting autism awareness, returns for fifth year

No Valentine's Day plans this year?

What about a day spent skiing with professional skier and Olympic gold medalist Bode Miller?

You can bid on this opportunity and more at this year's Light It Up Blue event, which returns to town for its fifth consecutive year Saturday.

Light It Up Blue is presented in association with Autism Speaks, the leading autism science and advocacy organization, and comes just six weeks shy of Autism Awareness Month in April.

Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that inhibits a person's ability to communicate and develop social relationships and is often accompanied by behavioral challenges, according to a statement from the event.

Roughly one in every 45 children is diagnosed with autism, and it is the fastest-growing developmental disability in the world, said Sallie Bernard, founder of Ascendigo Autism Services, a Roaring Fork Valley-based nonprofit organization that runs summer and winter camps for adults and children with autism. All of Light It Up Blue's proceeds will benefit Ascendigo.

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According to a statement from the event, the Light It Up Blue campaign has spread to include more than 1,800 participating locations in 180 cities and 35 countries.

Event sponsor Sentient Jet President and CEO Andrew Collins said the company is honored to support Light It Up Blue Aspen to raise awareness and increase donations for such an important cause.

"Sentient Jet has long been a part of the Aspen community," Collins said. "And we feel privileged to have the opportunity to positively impact the lives of those affected by autism through this incredible event."

This year's event at the Hotel Jerome will include a reception-style evening of fundraising, chef stations, handcrafted cocktails, wine, music, dancing, and live and silent auctions.

Other opportunities that guests may bid on at this year's Light It Up Blue event include a seven-day Mediterranean cruise and a weeklong stay at a villa in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

Entertainment will be provided by the Monster Allstars, made up of some of rock 'n' roll's top musicians, including Lynyrd Skynyrd keyboard player Peter Keys, Fuel's lead guitarist Andy Andersson and Blind Melon lead singer Travis Warren.

Other special guests include Dr. Jennifer Berman and Dr. Andrew Ordon, co-hosts of the Emmy award-winning CBS show "The Doctors."

IF YOU GO…

What: 5th annual Light It Up Blue fundraising event

When: Feb. 13, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. (VIP reception starts at 6:30)

Where: Hotel Jerome

Cost: $300 per general admission ticket. VIP tickets and table also available online.

Cocktail attire.

For more information: visit http://www.lightitupblueaspen.org or call 970-927-3143.

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