After 30 years, Burton’s Camp For All is still striving to bring barrier-free experiences to kids and adults facing challenging illnesses or having special needs. The year-long celebration of its success over the past three decades kicked off this year, and it all began at The Revaire in Houston with a special 30th Anniversary Gala.

The event’s co-chairs Laurie and Chris Baker and Debra and Steve Gilbreath welcomed past and current Camp For All campers and invited guests. The gala included a silent auction, a wine pull and a live auction. The gala went on to raise more than $1.2 million.

“Thanks to the generosity of our supporters and community over the past 30 years, Camp For All has been able to bring tremendous joy and light to the amazing campers and their families that visit us each year,” Camp For All President and CEO Pat Prior Sorrells says.

The evening honored Martha and Buzz White and Patrick Samuels for their longtime support and dedication to Camp For All. Lisa Malosky and Angela Wrigglesworth kept the energy level of the crowd high, serving as masters of ceremonies. Guests at the gala were informed that the day was like none other ― as a proclamation from the City of Houston designated January 21 as Camp For All Day.

Camper Mayra Delacruz shared touching memories of her Camp For All experiences in the Round Top region. Delacruz was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of two.

“My outlook and my future changed when I stepped onto the Camp For All grounds,” Delacruz says. “My first time attending Camp For All was at age 14 through Easter Seals, Camp Smiles. I was a scared and timid child who had never ventured out of her parents’ protection, stepping into the world outside her bubble.

“That week, I had fun doing activities that I never thought would be possible for me — ziplining, canoeing and riding a horse. This initial experience allowed me to gain knowledge of the greater disability community and step out of my comfort zone.”

Working in partnership with more than 65 other nonprofit organizations, Camp For All officially started welcoming campers to its camp in Burton in 1998. The organization not only enriches the lives of kids and adults with challenging illnesses or special needs but also their families. Enriching activities at Camp For all range from archery and arts and crafts to equestrian and lakefront fun.

“Over the past 30 years, the organization has empowered nearly 180,000 campers, helping them realize their challenges do not define them,” Sorrells says. “Funds raised during the gala go toward helping Camp For All welcome the nearly 9,000 campers that visit its 206 acre campsite each year.”