2014 3 Holiday Merry Christmas
Quadragenarians Mike and Jeff
Half of an octogenarian must be
a quadragenarian, right? Gary
Wagner decided that the four
Ranchers who have lived for 40
years at Rainbow Acres deserve
The Carriage Manor
Tennis Club from
Mesa, Arizona has
provided a fun and
party for Ranchers for
Ranchers and Staff all
look forward to this
generous group’s love
and spirit of Christmas
each year, and so
Mike Mattingly and Jeff Pitts
are the last two to be featured
during our 40th Anniversary year.
Both arrived in the Fall of 1974.
Jeff’s on-Ranch crew is in the
Palmer Center kitchen and he also
works offsite at Sedona Recycles.
He participates in the Rancher
Choir and enjoys watching TV
and doing craft projects in his
spare time. Jeff loves to greet
people when they come to visit
and has a wonderful memory for
faces, if not names.
Jeff lives in Dakin House with
nine housemates and performs his
daily chores cheerfully.
Mike works in the Crafts Room,
creating beaded hangings that are
sold to visitors. They might depict
patriotic or seasonal themes, and
his recent specialty has been
small crosses made from beads
that are translucent so that light
from behind shines through the
He is passionate about recycling,
loves attending Beaver Creek
Baptist Church, and he will tell
anyone who will listen about his
niece and her two children. Mike
lives in Baldwin House and likes
to watch TV and go to movies.
Holiday Greetings from the President
President & CEO
We have been emphasizing “excellence” all across the
Ranch in everything we do.
A highlight of the year has been the visits of the Executive
Director of the United Methodist Association EAGLE
Accreditation Program. At the 40th Anniversary he said,
“Because we represent Christ and the Church, the world looks at us with
caution and skepticism. We must give BETTER care than everyone
else. EAGLE is all about excellence, and our mission is to promote, inspire, empower and recognize excellence in Christian ministry. Rainbow
Acres has been recognized by EAGLE for doing just that. I am proud to
say that Rainbow Acres is part of a very select group that has met those
To everyone that has been or will be giving generously to strengthen the
ministry of Rainbow Acres and assure our excellent care for Ranchers,
Thank You! We wish you a joy-filled Christmas and blessed New Year.
For the Ranchers,
Mike Mattingly working
on a beaded hanging
Jeff Pitts shortly
after arriving at
Did You Know . . .
The lovely painting
pictured below is just
one of many that
have been completed
by Ranchers in the
Fine Arts Painting
classes in the last few
years. Untapped and
are brought forth at
2120 W Reservation Loop Rd
Camp Verde AZ 86322-8408
MISSION STATEMENT: Rainbow Acres is a Christian Community with heart that empowers persons
with developmental disabilities to live to their fullest potential with dignity and purpose.
40th Anniversary Celebration a Huge Success
Every event on October 24 and 25, 2014 was well-attended and exciting. During the Founders Luncheon on
Friday, October 24, founder Ralph Showers spoke enthusiastically about some of the challenges of the first
few years, including his accident involving a high-voltage power line, resulting in the loss of his lower arms
and hands and the struggle of learning to use prosthetic hooks to manage everyday
tasks. He signed copies of his book “Reach for a Rainbow” following the luncheon.
That evening a sumptuous dinner and Benefit Auction raised over $71,000 for the
Rancher Scholarship Fund, allowing help for those who call Rainbow home, but whose
income has been unable to keep up with the rising costs of care.
On Saturday, an Open House allowed members of the public and Rancher families to
participate in tours of the new homes, pet and feed a menagerie of unusual animals,
watch a demonstration of equestrian skills and enjoy a Rancher Choir program. All
Rancher-made craft items were made available to browse and purchase, a special
competition was held in Bocce Ball, Basketball and Track and Field, and a grilled hot
dog and ice cream made a fine al fresco lunch.
Saturday evening we honored the four Ranchers who have lived at Rainbow Acres since 1974 at the Gala
Banquet. Gary Wagner showed a view of the past, celebrated the present, and shared a vision for the future,
and everyone enjoyed a performance by Matt Savage, a young savant pianist with Autism.
It was a wonderful and successful celebration of 40 fabulous years of providing homes with heart for adults
with developmental disabilities!
Aria House and Casa Esperança
Van Dyck family and Board
members open Aria House
Casa Esperança dining area
© Rainbow Acres
New, modern homes that
provide private bedrooms
for ten Ranchers each has
been a top priority for
President and CEO Gary
Wagner almost from the
beginning of his leadership
Friday October 24 saw the
blessing of the construction site for Oikos House,
which will be the twelfth
new home for Ranchers
built since 2000. Oikos is
being sponsored through
the good hearts and hard
work of American Baptist
Churches of Los Angeles,
the Southwest and Hawaii.
A dedication ceremony
and receptions were also
held for newly completed
Casa Esperança (House
of Hope) and Aria House.
Dawn and Jen serve cake at
Aria House reception
Jussara and Gary Wagner
and daughter Abigail cut the
ribbon for House of Hope