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Two fundraisers coming up

March 14, 2012
By DIANE SPEER - News Lifestyles Editor , The Alpena News

Two fundraisers coming up over the next two weekends are providing area residents with an opportunity to reach out and help.

Many local people know and love Nancy Smithem, who for years has poured her considerable energies into championing a wide array of worthwhile causes to help others. She also has brought countless community events and activities into the limelight through her ongoing television program, Talk of the Town.

Smithem is an individual who truly loves her community and has continuously made a difference in that community.

Now the tables are being turned. Friends of Smithem and her husband, Jim, have planned a Cheeseburgers in Paradise benefit dinner for the couple.

Jim has been battling prostate cancer for the past eight years and is now at a critical point in his treatments. He and Nancy are incurring a number of expenses due to his treatments not covered by insurance and because of Jim's inability to continue working.

The dinner has been set for this Sunday from noon-6 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Hall. Catered by Fresh Palate, the party features a Jimmy Buffett theme, a silent auction, Chinese raffle and 50/50 drawing.

Fact Box

Cheeseburgers in Paradise

Benefit for Jim and Nancy Smithem

Sunday, March 18

noon-6 p.m. at

Knights of Columbus Hall

Ribbons for Gibbons

"Fun" Raising Event

Benefit for family of Gilly Gibbons

Sunday, March 25

noon-6 p.m. at

Knights of Columbus Hall

Anyone wanting to make a monetary donation may drop it off at the Besser Credit Union. Auction items can be dropped off at Michigan Works, Real Estate One or Statewide Realty. Tickets to the event can be purchased at Alpena Agency, Besser Credit Union and Fresh Palate. For more information about the fundraiser, contact Joan Hammond at 356-3726.

When asked about this weekend's benefit, Nancy Smithem was much more concerned about getting publicity for the second fundraiser which will take place March 25 from noon-6 p.m., also at the K of C Hall. Called Ribbons for Gibbons "Fun" Raising Event, proceeds will go to the family of Gilly Gibbons, who recently passed away after a seven-year battle with synovial sarcoma.

Many in the community followed Gilly's progress as he bravely fought against this rare form of cancer from the young age of 5. His parents, Robert and Shelly, both took leaves from their jobs during the last weeks of Gilly's life so that they could be with him fulltime.

Ribbons for Gibbons will feature a Chinese raffle, 50/50 sales, popcorn sale, raffles and a bake sale. A donation of $5 at the door includes a hot dog meal.

Anyone who would like to make a monetary donation or donate items for the bake sale and Chinese raffle should contact Kelly Losinski at 595-5177, Becca Stevens (collecting raffle donations) at 884-1338, Shannon Schrader at 464-8387, Brydi Haugerud at 471-2684 or Kim Modrzewski at 379-2942.



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