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Heart of NWA brings together three AHA events on May 21



FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Today, the Northwest Arkansas market of the American Heart Association (AHA), the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on heart and brain health for all, announced the Heart of Northwest Arkansas, a collaborative approach to its popular Go Red for Women luncheon, Heart Ball and Paint the Town Red fundraisers.

The digital event, slated for May 21, 2021, will feature stories of individuals from NWA communities whose lives have been affected by heart disease and stroke and the ways in which the AHA utilizes local funds to combat the nation’s No. 1 and No. 5 killers.

The affair carries the theme “Bringing our Hearts Together” – an ode to the cooperation of AHA staff and event chairs in bringing these blockbuster fundraisers under one umbrella. The fight for a healthier community isn’t fought alone; it will take everyone to advance cardiovascular health for all, including identifying and removing barriers to health care access and quality.

Each registered guest will receive a party box, goody bag and a meal. The event will also include live and silent auctions and special entertainment. Attendees are invited to participate safely in groups at home while exercising precautions against the spread of Covid-19. Those precautions include wearing masks and practicing social distancing. For virtual tickets, go to

“AHA’s mission remains critical, but we are not immune to the challenges of COVID-19,” said AHA Executive Director Serena Munns. “I’m especially humbled that these incredible volunteers have chosen to stand alongside us in a year when some event details remain uncertain. We’ll work together to overcome obstacles while building a healthier future for Northwest Arkansas.”

Chairs of the combined event include Marlena Bond, vice president private brand consumables, Walmart; Jason Fremstad, vice president adult beverage, Walmart; Silvia Azrai Kawas, vice president private brand grocery, Walmart; Diana Marshall, executive vice president hardlines, Walmart; Tom McDonald, Bayer Consumer Health Walmart and Sam’s Club VP and team leader; Megan Timberlake, Walmart team lead-beauty, health and grooming, Procter & Gamble; and Venessa Yates, vice president snacks, Walmart.

The combined digital event has something for everyone: health-conscious women and men who have and would have attended the AHA’s annual Go Red for Women luncheon; fans of the yearly Heart Ball, a black-tie optional seated dinner, auction and dance; and millennial professionals and others who are drawn the annual Paint the Town Red party with a purpose.

“I am so excited to be a part of this new collaborative event and work alongside the other event chairs to bring so many people in our community together in the fight against heart disease and stroke,” said Tom McDonald, co-chair of the 2021 NWA Heart Ball. “While the event may look different this year, the work of the American Heart Association is still important, now more than ever.”