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Jun 07, 2019

Planet Hollywood team member raises funds for Alex’s Lemonade Stand

Balloons released during the event.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
A child dressed as a superhero poses during walk down the stage.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Felicia walks on stage with two kids during the fashion show.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Felicia speaks on stage.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Felicia walks on stage with two kids during the fashion show.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Felicia poses with three others during the event.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Three HERO volunteers from Caesars Entertainment.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Cash donations in a container.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
Three kids pose for a picture.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
A girl holds a sign for Alex's Lemonade Stand.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond
A group of cheerleaders from UNLV.
Photo courtesy: Keith Diamond

It started as a volunteer project with her niece now; it has grown to one of the largest events in the nation.

If you ever have the chance to meet Felicia Nakhla, you will quickly learn she has a heart of gold.

One day her niece, who was in junior high school at the time, expressed the need to do volunteer work. Looking for a way to help her out, Nakhla suggested a lemonade stand, but she had a large-scale plan for the stand.

“I wanted to bring more awareness and more people to the stand. I wanted to get children involved with volunteering by having them run the stands and serve the lemonade,” said Nakhla.

Not only was she able to inspire children to help, but she even garnered the help of her employer, Caesars Entertainment.

“It makes me very emotional talking it because I am extremely touched by Caesars coming in and stepping into the level that they have,” said Nakhla.

Caesars Entertainment placed lemonade stands throughout properties on The Strip including Bally’s Las Vegas, Paris Las Vegas and Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. In addition, lemonade stands were placed in employee dining rooms to encourage team members to help.

Caesars Palace was doing a lemonade bike to sell lemonade. Team members could rent the bike and have fun with it back of house,” said Jason Rinta, total service manager for Bally’s Las Vegas, Paris Las Vegas and Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. “We are also doing a rummage sale for team members. We recently renovated Bally’s and Paris, so that team members can purchase items and all of the proceeds will go to Alex’s Lemonade Stand.”

For the past four years, Nakhla has enlisted the help of Caesars Entertainment and other community partners for a big event at Sunset Park.

“We call it ‘Kids Helping Kids Fight Cancer,” said Nakhla.

This year, the fundraising event featured bounce houses, games, food, and a fashion show.

“It’s just a very special event. We are now a grandstand, which is one of the largest stands in the nation,” said Nakhla. “This year our goal is to raise $7,000. Last year, we raised a little more than $5,000.”

The stands typically go up at the beginning of June, which is known as the famous lemonade days, Nakhla explained.

“Alex’s Lemonade Stand really wants kids to host stands, so kids can go to the foundation’s website and register,” said Nakhla.

Nakhla said her next goal is to be one of the highest-earning grandstands in the nation but her ultimate vision is to host one of the nation's largest events to raise money for Alex’s Lemonade Stand.