The After School Arts Program in Washington recently celebrated its ninth annual Celebration of Young Writers.

Rain and thunderstorms didn't keep more than 400 guests away for an event that began with a silent auction and catered reception under a tent on the Washington Green.

The live and reverse auction proceeds raised money to help allow ASAP to continue its mission of providing artistic and cultural opportunities for children via scholarships and financial aid awards.

This year's writers included 13 children from western Connecticut.

The evening's readers -- Fran Brill, Jack Gilpin, Adriana Mnuchin, Ellen McCourt, Sheila Nevins, Diane Meier, Carolyn Klemm, Fran Keilty, Paul Doherty and Alan Shayne -- featured people committed to the community and the cause of ASAP.

Author Frank Delaney was the host.

U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., sent a video shared with the crowd in support of ASAP.

Fellow Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., attended and, at the last minute, offered for auction a breakfast visit with him, as well as a tour of the Senate.

The young writers honored were Oliver Young, Riley Norris and Joscelyn Norris, all of Roxbury; Kayleigh McKay, of New Preston; Hunter Kolpak and Mary-Genevieve Moisan, both of Washington; Veronique Kinser, of Goshen; Hannah Hudson, of Southbury; Isabelle Poskas, of Woodbury; Samantha Stone, of Bethel; Lucy Patterson, of Norfolk; Augie Delves Broughton, of Litchfield; and Olivia Pesce, from the Westover School.

The evening closed with recognition of teachers.

Climaxing the event was the presentation of the Frank McCourt Prize for Excellence in Teaching to Anthony Weymouth, from Washington Primary School, and Marla Truini, from Westover School in Middlebury.