SEEING the reactions of sick children granted their special wish is always the highlight of one of Portland’s night of nights, according to Make-A-Wish Portland branch president Gail Jaensch.
Ms Jaensch said those who attend the black-tie event see first-hand the work being done for south-west children with serious illnesses.
“People can see the children and see the work and see the reactions when they get their wish,” she said.
At Saturday night’s ball Warrnambool’s Regan Squires, 6, who has been diagnosed with leukaemia, received her wish to visit the theme parks on the Gold Coast with her family.
Earlier in the day Thomas Meade, of Wallacedale, near Branxholme, was thrilled to get a ride in a police car.
Ms Jaensch said it was something the 11-year-old, who has muscular dystrophy duchenne, had always wanted to do.
To Thomas’s delight, Leading Senior Constable David Tognon, of Branxholme police, also inducted him into the force and made him an honorary constable.
Thomas and Regan also had the job of letting the fireworks off at the ball.
“To see little Regan and little Thomas, they were so excited,” Ms Jaensch said yesterday.
“Everyone looked gorgeous.”
More than 550 people attended the ball and Ms Jaensch said the whole community was involved in making the event a success.
Collingwood players, including Nick Maxwell, Alan Toovey and Tyson Goldsack, along with coach Nathan Buckley, once again threw their support behind the cause.
The ball was hosted by 3AW’s Denis Walter and Warrnambool radio host Jon Vertigan.
Ms Jaensch said the Portland Drag Club had donated $4000 to the Portland branch and entertainment in the afternoon included an aerobatic displays by the Royal Australian Air Force Roulettes and a community market with 30 stalls.
Ms Jaensch thanked the community and sponsors who supported the event.