Creative fundraiser supports Guatemalan mission

Mother’s Day is around the corner, and with it comes a host of ideas for family togetherness to celebrate the one who wears many hats and deserves all the spoils. Why not make your Mother’s Day gift something that benefits a good cause as well as showing Mom your love?

Salida’s First Presbyterian Church is hosting its third Paint with a Purpose party on Friday, May 4, at 6:30 p.m. to raise money to build a home for a family in Guatemala.

Local artist Nate “Naters” Calderone and Adrienne’s Palette have paired up to host these painting events for all ages in order to raise funds for a June mission trip to Guatemala. All proceeds will go toward building materials for the home. This installment of the painting series will feature a Mother’s Day-themed painting of a bluebird and her nest. Tickets are $35 and available through

Naters grew up in Salida and has been a member of the First Presbyterian Church since he was young. The church sponsors yearly mission trips that give local high school students an opportunity to become helping hands throughout the state, country and world. The church has fundraisers throughout the year, but Naters, who has participated in the mission trips since 2010, wanted to do something special to get the entire community involved in helping these seven students achieve their goal.

“I lived in Louisiana for a short time and worked at a place called Paint with a Twist. I really enjoyed that job because it combined two of my favorite things: art and theater. I thought this would be a great idea as a fundraiser to be able to showcase that creative side and get more people involved with helping these students,” said Naters.

Adrienne’s Palette along with local company Thrivent Financial will provide all the art supplies such as canvases, paints and brushes, so that more of the funds raised can go toward building materials.

The students from the church are working with a nonprofit organization called Pura Vida Ministries in Guatemala to be able to finish the house during the two weeks they are there.

Naters said a couple who are members of First Presbyterian and lived in Guatamala for years, even founding an orphanage there, helped the mission group get involved with Pura Vida Ministries. “He will be traveling with us on this mission trip. The relationship feels really fortuitous and we hope that this is the start of something really great for years to come between the church and this organization in Guatemala,” Naters said.

The church alternates each year between doing mission work around the state and traveling abroad, and the idea of traveling to Central America has everyone even more excited about this particular mission.

“I enjoy being able to mentor and be there for the students,” Naters said. “A lot of what we do can be done around here, but the traveling aspect has them all really excited, which is thrilling to see. It means so much to be able to share this experience with them.”