Fathers & Flashlights 14th Annual Community Event Celebrates Memorable Campout Under the Stars!
November 1, 2021
The 14th annual Fathers & Flashlights urban campout was held on Saturday, October 23 and Sunday, October 24 on the fields surrounding West University Elementary School. 523 children and 249 dads camped while over 240 volunteer moms took part in this unique and cherished neighborhood event.
Special thanks to the 2021 Fathers & Flashlights co-chairs, The Hill, Huth, and Knysh
Families, for planning and organizing another tremendously successful campout and
fundraiser. The event raised over $160,000 for West U parks plus additional in kind
donations valued at $24,000. The rain didn’t stop this group of neighbors and friends
from enjoying an event full of laughter, silliness, and a little bit of mud. Elite Care
Emergency Center was on hand to pass out ponchos to all in need. Tents were pitched
(some with assistance from our local sponsor, Goodsmith) and a wide-range of activities
began at 3:00pm. There was no shortage of smiles as the children enjoyed lawn games
and camel visits, a petting zoo, speed radar cage, face painting, catch-and-release
Fishing, a t-shirt tie dye station, and much more. After the wetness subsided, a
prophetic rainbow gave way to children playing football and tag on the local grounds as
this tight knit community refused to give up on an evening under the stars together.
None of this would have been possible without our wonderful underwriters and
sponsors. A special thanks to Camp Founder and Lead Sponsor of the event,
Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. A big thank you also to our Camp Heroes,
Gibson Dunn and Vinglace as well as our Camp Directors, Frost Bank and Kirkland &
Dinner was from The Pit Room, La Fresca Pizza & Grill, Chick-fil-A at Holcombe and
Buffalo Speedway and James Coney Island. Neighborhood favorite Tiny’s Milk &
Cookies provided dessert for everyone before it was lights out for the campers.
Breakfast on Sunday morning was a tasty treat for the participants who enjoyed donuts
from Shipley Do-Nuts, kolaches from the Kolache Shoppe, breakfast tacos from Liberty
Taco, hot cocoa from Hungry’s, and coffee from Starbucks.
Thank you to ALL of the underwriters, sponsors, and in kind donors, plus the many
volunteers and staff who make this event possible each year. Our generous 2021
contributors included: Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital, Gibson Dunn, Vinglace,
Frost Bank, Kirkland & Ellis, Goodsmith Home Care & Repair, Maggie Garza/Compass
Real Estate, Elizabeth Borski/Old Republic Title, Russo Services Remodeling &
Painting, The Pit Room, Truist Financial Corporation, Cammarata Pediatric Dentistry
Group, Chick-fil-A Holcombe & Buffalo Speedway, David B. Atkins/Stormy Hayes-Knipe/Kristine Martinez/Martha Turner Sotheby’s International Realty, Heidi
Dugan/Greenwood King, Hungry’s, Lauren & Brandon DeFrehn/Lauren DeFrehn
Photography, the Schaeffer Family, Village Plumbing & Air, West U Smiles by Dr. Julie
Longoria & Dr. Stephen Chen, The Woman’s Hospital of Texas, and the Wommack
For a complete listing of Fathers & Flashlights underwriters, sponsors, and in kind
donors, please visit westuparks.org. We are grateful to the West U Parks and
Recreation Department for their tremendous support. Thank you also to our event
photographer, Lauren DeFrehn Photography. Photographs from the event can be found
at the following webpage:
Fathers & Flashlights along with the Park Lovers’ Ball, coming up on February 5, 2022,
are the largest Friends fundraising events. There are also other opportunities for
involvement and ways to provide support. Friends fundraising continues year around
with business and community partnerships, memorials and honorariums, pavers,
benches, and tree sales.
The Friends of West University Parks Fund is a volunteer based 501(c)(3) organization
dedicated to raising funds for the renovation, development and improvement of parks
and green spaces in the neighborhood parks of the City of West University Place. The
board is appointed by City Council and raises money through foundation grants,
citizens’ bequests, memorials, special events and various other programs and events
including partnerships with local businesses.