(Fort Myers – January 2, 2009) –Cape Coral middle school student Kishelly Brown created the signature poster for the 2009 Southwest Florida Wine & Food Fest. The annual event to be held this February benefits children’s charities, including The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida. Kishelly is an ongoing patient of the hospital.
“She has ulcerative colitis,” said Ingrid Trevino, Kishelly’s mother, of the disease which was diagnosed in January 2007. “It’s a disease of the colon that they don’t have a cure for, so it’s something we have to watch. She’s on medication the whole time, but she can get flare-ups whenever the disease starts to act up.”
Those medications, she says, have been as challenging as the disease. “Because of the medicine she’s taking, she gets a lot of headaches and dizziness,” said Trevino. “She was on steroids so long that she got osteoporosis. Then she was changed to a medicine that is like chemotherapy in a pill. And that caused her immune system to get so low that she was sick in the hospital for a whole month.”
The young woman’s frequent hospital visits might have played a role in her developing art interests. “Spending so much time in the hospital, she is always drawing,” said Trevino. “Miss Kelly from HealthPark was always bringing her crafts and art things to do because that’s what she likes to do in her spare time there. She likes painting things for other people, so that’s when Miss Kelly decided that she was the one to do this art for the Wine Fest.”
Kishelly’s original art for the 2009 Southwest Florida Wine & Food Fest signature poster is a painting of a smiling teddy bear, seated in front of a blue vase filled with white, orange and purple flowers. She was guided by Fort Myers artists and Teacher Ellen Sheppard. “She is an amazing teacher,” Trevino says of Sheppard.
While Kishelly’s illness might be evident on a hospital chart, it is not so obvious in the patient. “She’s very easy-going,” said Trevino. “The nurses love her because she lets them do everything they have to do. No matter how much pain she’s in, she always has a smile on her face.”
Kishelly’s smile and personality have earned her a fan club of sorts. “She gets a lot of visitors,” said Trevino. “All the nurses want to go see her when she’s in; As soon as they find out she’s in, they have to go see her.”
Throughout her treatment and hospital visits, Kishelly has excelled in her school work, which she continues to do at Caloosa Middle School in Cape Coral.
Kishelly’s future art could be even more important than the piece she has designed for the Wine & Food Fest. “She is excited about it,” said Trevino. The only thing Kishelly wanted for Christmas was a paint and art set, because she wants to draw pictures like the one she drew for the Wine Fest to take to the kids in the hospital, her mother said.
The poster featuring Kishelly’s painting promotes the Southwest Florida Wine & Food Fest, which will be held February 27 & 28, 2009 at Miromar Lakes Beach and Golf Club. The event begins on Friday, February 27 with Chef Vintner dinners on Friday night at select area homes and continues on Saturday afternoon, February 28 with a Grand Tasting and Auction at Miromar Lakes. The event is presented by SWFL Children’s Charities, Inc. and will benefit the Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida and the Pediatric Nursing program at Edison State College.
Northern Trust is the main event sponsor and the News Press and Grandeur Magazine are the print sponsors.
For more information about Southwest Florida Wine & Food Fest: swflwinefest.org or information on sponsorship or ticket sales, call 239-432-9722.