Shining a Candlelight on Charity This Season

How Candlelight gives back, and the incredible impact they make

‘Tis the season to give back! The Candlelight Dinner Theatre is the premier dinner theatre in Northern Colorado. Offering Broadway-worthy productions six nights and two matinees a week, there is ample opportunity to see live theatre this holiday season. If magnificent performances, state-of-the-art sets, sound and incredible ambiance aren’t enough, The Candlelight sets itself apart by giving back to local charities. The Candlelight’s director of sales and marketing, Jalyn Webb, tells us about the charities that they donate to and how they use the holiday season to make their contributions go even further. 

One organization that they feel strongly about supporting is Realities for Children. Webb has personally been involved with Realities For Children for many years, belting out the National Anthem at the Realities Ride every year, the world’s largest ride. With all proceeds going to supporting children in our community, Webb uses her voice, both literally and figuratively to help the charity. Webb knew she wanted to incorporate Realities into the giving programs at The Candlelight. “When I came on board full-time at the Candlelight, I wanted to find a way to create even more of a support to them at the holidays,” Webb says.

Realities For Children ensures that no child is forgotten, looking out for abused, neglected, and at-risk children in Larimer County. Providing both ongoing and emergency support. Realities For Children encourages recovery and helps to end the cycle of abuse.

For the past two seasons, The Candlelight has raised money for the organization by having a campaign during the holiday show. This campaign sells a personalized candle and has raised over $20,000 for the organization. These candles have come to represent the spirit of giving to and supporting a cause and helping those most vulnerable. This year is no different, during their run of Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat there will be special candles with proceeds of course going to Realities For Children. 

Another organization The Candlelight feels strongly about is one that directly supports the thespian community in their times of financial need due to injury or illness. The theatre is committed to supporting The Denver Actors Fund which is very close to the hearts of everyone at Candlelight. Kent Sugg, a Candlelight legend, with more than 36 roles on stage, and directing credits, used the fund when he got the devastating diagnosis of Stage 3 Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma in late 2018.  

Despite the diagnosis, he couldn’t be kept from his love of performing, “Fortunately it was a slow-growing form of lymphoma that couldn’t prevent me from continuing to perform regularly at Candlelight,” Sugg said of his illness. 

With financial help from the Denver Actors Fund, Sugg started the battle for his life and spent his precious time when he could at the place he loved so much, the Candlelight stage, without added financial stress. Sadly, Sugg passed away on June 10th, 2023. All who knew him drew comfort from the fact that financial stress from his illness wasn’t hindering his fight, thanks to the fund.

In addition to Sugg, many of the actors from Candlelight have used the Denver Actors Fund for financial and practical volunteer assistance. Because of the personal connection and proximity to those she works with, Webb has organized a way to raise money and contribute to the fund that has helped so many in the theatre community.

After one show per season, there is a donation box for Candlelight patrons to contribute. More than $50,000 has been donated to the fund because of the generous nature of the Candlelight patrons. Look out for the box after “The Secret Garden” this spring.

In the future, Candlelight will continue to support both of these programs and encourage their patrons to do the same. The spirit of giving is alive and well, especially during the holidays thanks to Webb, who has used her platform to give back. Benefitting not only the talented actors but also those who are the most vulnerable, both Denver Actors Fund and Realities For Children are doing incredible things with the help of donations from Candlelight and the generosity of their patrons.

 “When I came on board full-time at the Candlelight, I wanted to find a way to create even more of a support to them at the holidays” - Jalyn Webb

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