Bright Stars Presented by M&T Bank Raises over $355,000 for Easterseals DC MD VA

Omnium Gives a Night at the Circus for Children and Adults of All Abilities

March 31, 2022

Silver Spring, MD — On February 26, Easterseals DC MD VA raised over $355,000 at its annual signature family event – Bright Stars Night at the Circus Presented by M&T Bank (Bright Stars) – at Capital One Hall.

Children, families, and supporters enjoyed feats of acrobatics, aerialists, and more at an exclusive live circus performance by Omnium: A Bold New Circus. Led by Ringmaster Jonathan Lee Iverson, the circus kicked off its new live season that weekend.

Omnium embraces a mission similar to Easterseals, which is leading the way to inclusivity and equity for people of all abilities. As the first fully inclusive circus of multi-abled, multi-talented performers, Omnium designs its performances for people of all abilities so everyone can enjoy the circus in whatever way works best for them. Watching inspiring acts of awe and delight, Easterseals families experienced a night truly belonging to all.

A VIP reception before the show hosted major sponsors and enabled Easterseals families to meet performers, make arts & crafts, and enjoy dinner and drinks. Volunteers from M&T Bank, the presenting sponsor, helped run the VIP reception.

Bright Stars Committee Co-Chairs Cecilia Hodges of M&T Bank and Craig Ruppert of Ruppert Companies, Founding Co-Chair David A. Ross of Atlantic Realty Companies, and Ellen Bryan of WUSA9’s morning show “Great Day Washington” kicked off the night with opening remarks. Easterseals DC MD VA President & CEO Jon Horowitch presented them with appreciation gifts and welcomed the crowd.

Corporate sponsorships and ticket sales allowed hundreds of children and adults with disabilities, including military families, Wounded Warriors, first responders, and other deserving families, to join in this night of fantasy. Funds raised from Bright Stars directly benefit Easterseals DC MD VA to enrich lives and expand opportunities for all children and adults in our communities, including people with disabilities and military backgrounds.

Photos are available upon request.


Easterseals DC MD VA – Easterseals is leading the way to full equity, inclusion, and access through direct and life-changing disability and community services. Since 1945, Easterseals DC MD VA has worked tirelessly to enhance quality of life and expand access to healthcare, education, and employment. And we won’t rest until each one of us is valued, respected, and accepted. Join us:

Contact: Lauren Poon, Manager of Communications & Marketing,

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