Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Names Weekly Winners of Homespun Hero Contest!

By July 17, 2017Company News

Orlando, FL (July 17, 2017) – Ripley’s Believe It or Not! is proud to announce their Homespun Hero of the week!

Fran Charlson Executive Director Ayles Acres Animal Rescue was nominated. Fran personally sees to the No-Kill theory. She rescues and places foster animals. In addition to purchasing land and building a haven and memorial park for animals, she also focuses on educating children and adults on the importance of spaying and neutering pets.

Deputy Dwayne Martin was nominated by Jeff Brown. Dwayne Martin is an officer from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Martin has been with the agency for many years. He also had a 23-year career as a Military Police Officer. On May 5th, 2004, he was on patrol in Pine Hills when he responded to a crime in progress call. On arrival, he and other officers were confronted with an armed suspect who engaged them in a gun battle. During the gun fight, Deputy Martin was shot in the shoulder. He stayed in the fight and survived his injuries. After recovery, Deputy Martin returned to full duty. To this day he is still an active and well-respected member of the Sheriff’s Office.

Holly Estes was nominated by her husband. Eight years ago, Holly dedicated herself to fostering children that needed the most help. Many of these children were abandoned or born addicted to drugs. In the years that she has opened her home to these children, she has fostered 45 kids.

Brandy Bethea nominated her son. Her son has a rare condition where he was born with a tethered spinal cord. His bladder and intestines are on the outside of his body. He has had multiple surgeries, but the surgeries have never slowed him down. He still wears a colostomy bag and will endure more surgeries, but he doesn’t get discouraged. He loves all superheroes, but in my eyes, he is the superhero.


Winners receive a prize pack from Ripley’s including a lifetime pass to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! and will be registered for Superhero Sweepstakes grand prize of $2500 plus $2500 for their favorite charity.

Winners will be announced weekly throughout the summer. This program is part of Ripley’s Superhero Summer, which includes superhero character appearances over the summer with a portion of all proceeds on appearance days going to charity, and a Sweepstakes of $2500 for the winner and $2500 for their favorite charity.

On character appearance days, Ripley’s will show the film Look to the Sky by producer Brett Culp. Look to the Sky is a full-length film about children who have overcome incredible obstacles to give back. It is a truly inspirational film that celebrates the theme of our Superhero Summer, giving back and helping our community.



Suzanne Smagala-Potts
Public Relations Manager
Ripley Entertainment
Office: 407-345-8010 Cell: 727-439-0136

About Ripley Entertainment
Ripley’s Believe It or Not! is part of the Ripley Entertainment Inc. ( family of worldwide attractions, the global leader in location-based entertainment.  More than 14 million people visit its 100-plus attractions in 11 countries each year.  In addition to its 31 Believe It or Not! Odditoriums, the Orlando, Florida-based company has publishing, licensing and broadcast divisions that oversee projects including the syndicated Believe It or Not! television show, best-selling books and the popular syndicated cartoon strip, Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, that still runs daily in countries around the world. Ripley Entertainment is a Jim Pattison Company, the second-largest privately held company in Canada.