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Fundraiser Drawing Posted April 28, 2017

The second annual Blasting Blood Cancer to Bits drawing for firearms and other outdoor equipment is now underway. All proceeds will benefit the Emily Whitehead Foundation for pediatric cancer research.

The drawing consists of four handguns, a kayak, a crossbow, stun guns, a rod and reel and other outdoor-related items. Tickets are available for a fee and may be obtained at Kinsey's Outdoors, 1658 Steel Way, Mount Joy, or by contacting Tom Garrett at 315-7228 or tgarrett@msn.com.

Last year's initial drawing helped raise more than $2,200 for the foundation. This year's goal is to raise more than $3,000.

Kinsey's Outdoors also plans to hold an Emily Whitehead Foundation Day this spring. During the event, a percentage of each sale will go to the foundation.

The Emily Whitehead Foundation was formed by the family of Emily Whitehead. The foundation's mission is to help fund innovative treatments for childhood cancer. In 2012, Emily Whitehead became the first child treated for her cancer using her own re-engineered T cells. After relapsing from a bout with leukemia, Emily entered a clinical trial at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), where she underwent the new therapy. She almost died and was on life support for two weeks and in a coma. But the doctors at CHOP fought to keep her alive while they addressed the side effcts of the new treatment. Emily awoke from her coma on her seventh birthday. Detailed medical tests revealed she was cancer free. Nearly five years later, doctors and researchers have built on Emily's case, and the treatment is now being used to save the lives of many children and adults. For more information, readers may visit www.emilywhiteheadfoundation.org.

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"Walk For Clean Water" Raises Funds April 28, 2017

Hershey High School held Pennsylvania's largest Walk for Clean Water on April 9. More than 500 people attended the second annual community event, which raised funds and awareness for Thirst Project, a youth water activism organization aimed at building a socially conscious generation of young people who end the global water crisis.

Participants raised more than $28,000 toward funding clean water wells in Swaziland, Africa. Thirst Project will equate the funds toward building two clean water wells, with extra funds to be contributed to another project.

The local event was founded by Hershey High School students Erica Wang and Michael Miller. Last year, 250 people attended the first-ever Walk for Clean Water, and the student club raised $12,000, enough to fund the cost of one clean water well.

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Stories Of Triumph April 20, 2017

Organizers for Relay For Life of Norlanco had originally scheduled the group's spring rally for March 14, but the snow that fell on New Holland that day pushed the event forward to April 11, when the group gathered at the American Legion Post 662 in New Holland. The rally is held in preparation for the Relay, which will be held on Friday and Saturday, June 23 and 24, at Garden Spot High School, 669 E. Main St., New Holland. At the recent rally, the honorary caregivers and honorary survivor for this year's Relay spoke to the gathering.

Richard and Amanda Wagner of Ephrata were named honorary caregivers for 2017. The Wagners received the honor based on the care they gave their daughter, Sophia, who was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of 12 weeks.

Sophia, who is the Wagners' first child, was born in April 2016. "It was a happy, exciting time in our lives," said Amanda, who noted that the family moved to a larger home following Sophia's birth. In July, Sophia was fussy, and Amanda took her to the pediatrician, suspecting an ear infection. At the doctor's office, it soon became apparent that Sophia's health problem was serious. "They began giving her oxygen, and they called an ambulance and took her to Lancaster General Hospital to run tests," said Amanda. "The pediatrician said, 'I think it's leukemia.'"

Amanda and Richard rushed home to pack clothing as their daughter was airlifted to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for a blood transfusion. "We were still hoping it was mono or something else, but it was leukemia," said Amanda, who soon learned that her daughter's chance of survival could be as low as 20 percent. "She was in the (pediatric intensive care unit) for several weeks," said Amanda. Sophia's course of treatment included three phases of chemotherapy followed by a bone marrow transplant in November. "(After) the transplant, it got tough again because she got really sick from it," explained Amanda, who noted that after Sophia was discharged, they needed to remain near the hospital for about a month.

At the rally, Amanda smiled with relief. "We are home, and (Sophia) is cancer-free," she said. "We just had a (doctor's) appointment today." The family celebrated Sophia's first birthday on April 16.

Honorary survivor Jennifer Graybill, who attended the rally with her husband, Stan, was celebrating a milestone the night of the event. "I am having my five-year anniversary," said Jennifer, who was first diagnosed with cancer in 2011 after the birth of her son Landon. "I wasn't healing well," said Jennifer, who was 34 at the time and has three other children. She visited her obstetrician, who sent her to an oncologist, who diagnosed her with cervical cancer. "The oncologist said, 'I'm sorry, kid,' relayed Jennifer, who heard those words on Feb. 14, 2011.

By June of 2011, Jennifer had received both chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Later that year, in November, she began to have discomfort. "In January 2012, (my oncologist) said (my cancer) was back, and he said, 'You have had all the chemo and radiation you can have.'" The doctor added that a few decades back, he would just have prescribed medication to keep Jennifer comfortable, but that he thought she might be a candidate for a type of surgery he had performed at Duke University. The surgery, called total pelvic exenteration, could be done in Philadelphia if Jennifer qualified as a candidate.

Stan drove Jennifer to Philadelphia for an assessment, and a 13-hour surgery, followed by a six-week hospital stay, was scheduled. On Feb. 23, 2012, Jennifer underwent the surgery. She has since become a mentor with the American Cancer Society. "It took all (five years) for me to start to feel like myself again," Jennifer said. "I told (my mentee) the tricks I have learned, and it felt good to be able to help somebody."

For more information, readers may search for "Relay For Life of Norlanco" on Facebook.

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ODC Auxiliary Slates Plant Sale April 19, 2017

Occupational Development Center (ODC) is holding a spring flower sale in conjunction with its chicken barbeuce and craft and vendor fair, which is slated for Saturday, May 6, from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Occupational Development Center, 640 Martha Ave., Lancaster. A sale of flowers and herbs will be conducted by the ODC Auxiliary on May 6. Preorders will be available for pickup between 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will also be a flower and herb selection of cash-and-carry items under a tent at the chicken barbecue event.

Geraniums, impatiens, and zinnias can be ordered in advance by Monday, April 24. Also available for preorders are 4-inch pots of herbs and quart pots of lavender. Information on preorders can be obtained by calling Harriet Eshleman at 397-0283.

Additionally, gerbera daisies and osteospermum plants will be available on the day of the sale.

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Seat At The Table Receives Funding April 19, 2017

Memorial Health Fund, a supporting organization of the York County Community Foundation, has awarded a $250,000 grant to A Seat at the Table, a collaborative effort to improve the charitable food system while increasing healthy food access to York County residents in need. The collaborative partnership consists of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, York County Food Bank, Catholic Harvest Food Pantry, New Hope Ministries, and the York County Food Alliance and was formed in response to the release of Gov. Wolf's "Blueprint for a Hunger-Free Pennsylvania."

In York County, there is an unmet meal gap of more than 4.5 million meals per year, meaning that current efforts are only meeting 49 percent of the hunger needs of the county. To help close this gap, the grant funds will secure a program manager to gather data to map the healthy food access network and share this information with Feeding America.

Feeding America, a nationally recognized source on hunger issues, will then review the findings, conduct analysis, and ultimately make recommendations to provide a two-year scope of work for the collaborative. It will act as a neutral party focused on best practice approaches to close the meal gap.

Additionally, the program is addressing immediate needs by investing in a Pantry Pilot approach with York County charitable food providers to model best practices to implementing healthy eating options to food pantries and consumers. The third part of the program is the initial implementation of capacity and infrastructure improvements so that food providers, youth programs, and nutrition access systems can respond to the recommendations from Feeding America.

For more information, readers may visit www.yccf.org.

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Youth Group Gears Up For Mulch Madness April 17, 2017

Mulch Madness is back, just in time for sunshine-filled days of spring yardwork. The youth group of Marietta Community Chapel, 1125 River Road, Marietta, will host its annual Mulch Madness fundraiser and community yard sale and plant sale from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, May 6.

Area residents are invited to order mulch by calling 426-4584 or emailing chapelmulch@gmail.com by Sunday, April 30. Mulch will be delivered to the church and available for pickup or home delivery between 7:30 a.m. and noon on May 6. Separate fees have been set for black-dyed mulch and brown premium ground bark mulch, which are available by the cubic yard. Youth leader Deb Sauder said that one cubic yard of mulch is estimated to cover approximately 100 square feet, three inches deep. The mulch is purchased from a family-owned landscaping company in Middletown.

Folks are invited to browse the selection of yard sale treasures and the variety of perennials available at the plant sale on May 6. Yard sale spaces are available to rent, and interested individuals may inquire by calling the previously mentioned phone number. A fee has been set for a space, and an additional cost will be applied to rent tables. Youth group members will staff a stand with donated items.

The food stand, which Sauder said is always a highlight, will offer hot dogs, walking tacos, snacks, beverages, and baked goods for shoppers to purchase.

Funds raised at the event will support the youth group's upcoming trip to the Move convention in Salisbury, Md. "Our youth group has a four year cycle. We do a service or mission trip three of the years and a convention (or) conference on the fourth year," explained Sauder. "The funds do carry over from year to year for the more expensive international trip."

Sauder said the spring yard sale had been a youth group fundraising tradition for many years, but the first mulch sale took place in 2010. The plant sale was incorporated more recently. "This event pulls the church and community together," said Sauder. "It's always so encouraging to see everyone supporting our youths, from all the volunteers to those who support us financially by renting a yard sale space to sell their own items, to purchasing mulch or just stopping by for lunch and shopping the yard sales."

For more details, readers may visit www.mariettachapel.org.

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Bark For Life Set For April 29 April 13, 2017

Community interest has resulted in the introduction of a Bark For Life event to southern Lancaster County. Relay For Life of Solanco event chair Trudy Grove noted that a Bark For Life has been successful in Lancaster, but Southern End residents wanted one located closer to home. As a result, a Bark For Life event will be held at Legion Memorial Park, 172 S. Lime St., Quarryville, on Saturday, April 29, from 9 a.m. to noon. Registration will open at 8 a.m.

Bark For Life will be similar to Relay For Life in that there will be opening and closing ceremonies and participants may stroll around the track, but otherwise, the event will focus primarily on activities for dogs. Fly ball demonstrations will be offered, there will be contests, and prizes will be awarded for cutest dog, biggest dog, smallest dog, and best costume. Every participant will receive a canine-themed goodie bag.

The event will be held rain or shine. People who plan to participate are asked to register in advance at www.relayforlife.org/barksolancopa so the organizers can plan adequately. Day-of registrations will be accepted as well.

"We're excited about the Bark, but not a lot (of people) have signed up," Grove remarked.

There is a cost to participate in Bark For Life, but folks are encouraged to raise funds in excess of the participation fee. The proceeds will support the American Cancer Society (ACS), whose goal is a world with less cancer and more birthdays.

Registration is also open for teams who will participate in the Relay For Life event that will be held from 4 p.m. on Friday, June 23, to 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 24, at Solanco High School, 585 Solanco Road, Quarryville. Folks may register at www.relayforlife.org/pasolanco. Sponsorship opportunities are available for the event, and those interested may contact ACS community manager Stephanie Delp at 397-3745 or stephanie.delp@cancer.org.

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"Help The Fight" Plans Fundraising Events April 12, 2017

"We help people battling breast cancer pay their bills," said Lynda Charles, who founded Help the Fight with her husband, David. "We have found that most people are one major illness away from bankruptcy."

The organization is dedicated to providing financial support to individuals who are receiving treatment for breast cancer and for those who need the necessary screening process, including mammograms and genetic testing, to detect breast cancer.

"Being able to tell a patient you can help them is the best part (of working for Help the Fight)," said administrative coordinator Susie Dailey.

Help the Fight was created in 2009 after a confluence of events. In 1989, Lynda's mother died from breast cancer at age 49. Twenty years later, David's sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, and then within weeks, a co-worker was also diagnosed with the disease. Lynda recalled her mother's fight to live and saw the financial impact on David's sister, and she wanted to help. Within two and a half weeks, the Charleses and their friends and co-workers put together a bake sale that raised $9,000.

Initially, Lynda ran Help the Fight out of the three-car garage located on the Charles farm outside Millersville. Recently, however, the organization moved into space in a storefront at 143 Oakridge Drive, Mountville, that is nestled between David's two businesses. Lynda is pleased to have her garage back for its intended use, but she is even more excited about Help the Fight's progress.

"We are growing, and we are helping all the local communities," Lynda remarked.

Last year, Help the Fight supported 185 patients. Applicants must provide verification of their diagnosis or testing order, and the information is held in strict confidence. The process is not a long one, and in fact, some applicants have received funds within 12 hours of applying.

"It's difficult to reach out and ask for help, yet that's what we (are here for)," Lynda said. "We want to alleviate even the smallest amount of stress for them."

Bestowing money requires raising funds, and Help the Fight has numerous fundraising events throughout the year. An annual gala affair is held at Spooky Nook in October and features a buffet, prizes, auctions, and dancing.

"We've grown because everyone who comes wants to come again," Lynda said. "We work very hard for that event."

Help the Fight hosts a cash giveaway during the month of June, and entry tickets are on sale now. Orders are also being accepted for a sub and sandwich sale. Orders are due by Thursday, May 11, and deliveries will be made on Thursday, May 18.

On Saturday, April 22, Help the Fight will host a "back to our roots" bake sale and yard sale from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Yard sale spaces are available for a fee for folks who would like to sell their items. Donations of individually wrapped baked goods for the bake sale are also accepted.

To reserve spaces, order sandwiches, or learn more about Help the Fight, readers may call 455-7095, email helpthefightnow@gmail.com, or visit www.helpthefight.org. Updates are also posted on the organization's Facebook page.

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Shadey's Rugged Run April 12, 2017

Doug Gundlach, one of the Lancaster Bible College (LBC) students working to organize Shadey's Rugged Run, wants those who are considering the mud course to know that if they have seen one mud run course ... they have only seen one mud run course. "It's not the same old course," stated Gundlach. "The start and finish lines are in different areas, and the obstacles are different. The course is new every year."

The 2017 Shadey's Rugged Run will be held rain or shine at LBC, 901 Eden Road, Lancaster, on Saturday, May 6. The 3.5-mile run, which attracts hundreds of participants, will start in waves beginning with the elite timed competitors at 8 a.m. Open waves of up to 50 runners, which will not be timed, will begin at 8:20 a.m. Organizers expect to attract about 500 registrants, but the number of runners at past events has topped 700.

Gundlach is one of a number of senior sports management students tasked with organizing the run. "The feel is different every year, (as a) new group of students organizes (the event)," said race director Amanda Dowhen. "This is part of their sports management student experience, and it gives them practical hands-on learning."

As in the past, the event will include 17 obstacles, some of which will be familiar to participants, while others will be new. "There's always lots of mud, so there will be multiple mud pits, and there are some water obstacles," said Gundlach, who listed a water slide and a dumpster dive among the wet activities. Climbing, crawling, and jumping over fire will also be part of the run. "We are bringing back the tire hill, which is an old obstacle where you (climb) up the side of a steep hill in tires (and mud)," Gundlach noted, adding that there will be a mystery obstacle as well. Fellow organizer Caleb Onasch revealed that the mystery obstacle will challenge a participant's balance.

Gundlach said participants in the event tend to come from all walks of life and that many take part in groups. "There are families, co-workers from local businesses, young people, youth groups, college kids, some singles, and people who come with friends," he said. "It is a pretty even mix."

According to Dowhen, the run has been a successful fundraiser for the college. "We have made about $120,000 (total) in the last four years," she noted, adding that 70 percent of the funds that are raised are used for capital improvements in the LBC athletic department and that the remainder is donated to Penn State Hershey Children's Miracle Network.

Students who handled marketing for the run have offered a number of promotions via Facebook and Instagram, including giving away theater and amusement park tickets. The group also instituted a social referral program that offers participants a rebate on the race fee based on the number of people they refer who sign up to run.

Readers who wish to learn more or to register to take part may visit www.shadeysruggedrun.com.

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Mount Joy Chamber Slates Annual Banquet, Auction April 7, 2017

The beauty and allure of springtime in Paris will be front and center as the theme of the Mount Joy Chamber's annual banquet and benefit auction on Friday, April 21, at The Gathering Place, 6 Pine St., Mount Joy.

The evening will begin at 5:30 p.m. with appetizers and a silent auction. Several local restaurants will prepare signature appetizers for attendees to choose from.

A buffet dinner served at 7 p.m. will include French bistro salad, garlic knot rolls and artisan bread, chicken cordon bleu, baked salmon with bourbon glaze, brisket bourguignon, a variety of side dishes and beverages, and an assortment of miniature French pastries for dessert.

Following dinner will be a live auction, and the items up for bids will include a Dine in Mount Joy package featuring gift cards to 16 area restaurants; gift baskets from local businesses; local theater tickets; various overnight stays, including a getaway in Ocean City, Md.; a pie-a-month subscription; a membership to the Mount Joy Pool; and more.

Attendees may also bid for the opportunity to be the major sponsor of a Mount Joy Chamber luncheon where local news anchor Brian Roach will be the guest speaker. The winning bidder's business name will be included on a banner at the event and will be featured in other promotional items, noted Mount Joy Chamber coordinator Kerry Meyers.

Paris-themed items will also be part of the auction selection, and cafe tables and other Paris-related accessories will round out the decor. Last year's theme of "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" was a hit, and from year to year attendees are welcome, but not required, to dress to complement the theme of the event. "Some people come dressed according to the theme, and others don't," Meyers noted.

Meyers emphasized that the event is open to anyone in the community, not just Chamber members.

In addition to Meyers, the banquet and auction team members include Joanne Pinkerton, Sally Chille, Norma Millard, Leonard Nolt, Missy Hartman, Barbara Basile, Krista Angney, Ashley Zell, Jan Johnson, Nancy Skee, Linda Eberly, and Aimee Skee.

Interested individuals may reserve tickets at a discounted rate by calling the Chamber office at 653-0773 or by emailing info@mountjoychamber.com by Monday, April 17. Full-price tickets will be available at the door on the evening of the event.

Funds raised from the annual event help to support the scholarships awarded to local students by the Chamber each year, along with the costs of operating the Mount Joy Chamber of Commerce and Visitor's Center.

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