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Excited shoppers stream into Omaha’s A View on State Street as the doors open for Max I. Walker cleaners 11th Annual Ultra Chic Boutique dress sale on Feb. 3. Around 3,000 dresses were available for just $30 each, with all proceeds benefitting the Alzheimer’s Association Nebraska Chapter. (Photos: Max I. Walker)

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A bride-to-be carries wedding gowns toward the dressing rooms at the 11th Annual Ultra Chic Boutique dress sale, in hopes of finding her dream dress for a price tag of just $30. The sale featured more than 100 wedding gowns, as well as formal, prom and little black dresses.

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Local television personalities and pageant winners from Omaha and the surrounding communities volunteered to model some of the top donated dresses for the Ultra Chic Boutique Style Show. A chance to purchase each of the featured dresses was raffled off, with all proceeds benefitting the Alzheimer’s Association Nebraska Chapter.

Tim Burke |

Prom gown proceeds from Boutique support mission to find Alzheimer’s cure

OMAHA, Neb. — The 11th Annual Max I. Walker Ultra Chic Boutique was a success again this year, the company reports, with both a new home and a new beneficiary of the funds raised.

The doors opened at 9 a.m. Feb. 3, the cleaners says, “at the event’s new home A View on State Street, to a line of several hundred excited shoppers. More than 100 volunteers manned the dressing rooms, rehung dresses and cashed out shoppers.”

Throughout the 6-hour sale, it indicates, $20,000 was raised for the Ultra Chic Boutique’s new partner, the Alzheimer’s Association Nebraska Chapter. The proceeds will be used to further the association’s mission of finding a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease and other dementias.

“Currently, five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s Disease. That number is expected to triple to 15 million by 2050,” says Lisa Walker Sekundiak, vice president of Max I. Walker and creator of the Ultra Chic Boutique. “We need to find a cure for this terrible disease, and the only way to move forward with that is through funding.”

For ten years, the sale benefitted Omaha’s Open Door Mission’s Lydia House emergency services program for women and children; $125,000 total was given, the firm notes. But the Walker family now has a personal tie to Alzheimer’s, so the change in partners made sense at this juncture.

“The annual sale,” it notes, “offers gently used gowns for just $30 each, regardless of original value or brand, with all proceeds going to charity.”

Around 3,000 wedding, formal, prom and little black dresses were collected from Omaha and the surrounding communities throughout 2017, which Max I. Walker Cleaners employees cleaned and pressed at no charge, then stored until the big day.

The Ultra Chic Boutique began in 2007 with a few hundred donated dresses and a small space to sell the gowns. The concept has evolved into an event housed in a 12,000-square-foot venue, which includes fashion shows, The Dress FlipTM design competition, a dress raffle, vendors and thousands of gowns.

Family-owned Max I. Walker cleaners was founded by Max I. Walker on March 17, 1917. Over the years, it has grown from a small route business to a company with hundreds of employees serving 24 locations in Omaha, Papillion and Bellevue, Neb., and Council Bluffs, Iowa.

About the author

Tim Burke

American Drycleaner

Editor

Tim Burke is the editor of American Drycleaner. He can be reached at 312-361-1684 or tburke@atmags.com.

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