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Category Archives: non-profits

Fun for Pets’ Sake

Saturday Steven and I went to the Antique Mall at 100 E. Main St. in Mohawk, NY for a fundraiser for 4PetSake.

4PetSake is a food pantry for pets. I don’t know much more about it than that, but anything that helps animals is OK in my book. Additionally, we had never been to the Antique Mall. It sounded like an excellent Mohawk Valley adventure.

The event ran till four. It was after two when we arrived (due to Steven’s work schedule). We checked out some of the antique vendors first. I love looking at antiques, except that it’s a little disconcerting when I see things that I remember very well from my childhood. I suppose I’m getting to be an antique myself, although I prefer the term “vintage” (and my readers who might be older than me, don’t worry: you’re vintage, too, and I’m sure we all improve with age) (any of my lovely readers, at any rate).

Eventually, Steven and I made our way to the 4PetSake people. Our first order of business was to put in for the Basket Raffle (also known as a Chinese Auction). As I made my selections, I heard some lovely Christmas music. Then I saw that it was a gentleman at the end of the room, singing into a microphone. When he paused, I approached him and told him how much I was enjoying it.

“I thought it was a CD,” I told him.

“It is.” He indicated where his background music was coming from.

“Oh, but your voice is so beautiful.”

“Thank you.”

“No, thank you.” It really added to the ambiance.

Steven and I also bought some treats at the bake sale as well as a couple of hot dogs. Before we left, we checked out a few antique vendors we had missed. It was a very enjoyable afternoon. We’ll have to check out the Antique Mall again, and we will definitely look for more 4PetSake fundraisers.

For more information on 4PetSake, call 315-796-2584, or email You can also Like their Facebook page.

“Dirty Work” for a Good Cause

I would like to use today’s post to give a brief shout-out to Habitat for Humanity

Habitat bills itself as a hand up not a hand out. They build homes for deserving, needy families. The families work on the homes as well.

I first encountered the group up north, many years ago when I was in Kiwanis. A member of a neighboring Kiwanis Club also worked with Habitat and saw first hand what a different it makes in the lives of recipients.

At the request of another friend, I participated in a Raquette Valley Habitat for Humanity fundraiser. All I had to do was go bowling. The money I paid to bowl went to Habitat. I know with these bowl-a-thons (not that we bowled that many games), participants usually go around and get people to sponsor them per pin. With my bowling average (if you can call it an average as seldom as I bowl), that could hardly have raised much. Also, my circle of acquaintance at the time was very limited. Anybody I could have asked had probably already been asked or was bowling themselves.

The other knowledge I have of Habitat is that there is a Habitat home near a relative I see one or two times a year. The home has been there for a number of years now and looks just as beautiful as when it was brand new. I see real pride of ownership in such a well kept property.

I write about Habitat for Humanity, because last night they held a fundraiser in conjunction with Ilion Little Theatre (ILT). We put on our play Dirty Work at the Crossroads. They paid our group a set amount to cover our royalties and expenses, then sold tickets to their supporters.

It is a definite win/win situation. Win for ILT because those Habitat people are the BEST audience! They are ready to be pleased. They laughed at all the jokes. They applauded long and loud at the end. They all told us how much they enjoyed the show.

I may try to get more involved with Habitat for Humanity. I think that would be a very good project for Mohawk Valley Girl.

Luau, Limbo and Loving It!

Last night (Saturday), Steven and I attended the H.A.L.O. Chicken Barbeque and Luau Party at the Polish Home in Herkimer, NY. Today I am too tired to write a proper blog post about it!

H.A.L.O., which I have written about before, is Helping Animals Live Organization, a non-profit, no kill cat shelter based in Little Falls. I can’t possibly adopt a cat due to allergies, but I support their fundraisers whenever possible.

I had been looking forward to the Luau Party all week. For one thing, I knew there would be dancing and I love to dance. My only regret was that I could not find a grass skirt. I did find a large flower for my hair and some colorful leis. I also found a seashell necklace I’ve had for a while. We put on matching Hawaiian shirts and felt ready for the evening.

The chicken dinner part was quite tasty, but it was when the dancing started that the fun really began. Music was provided by Dave Silvers of Bug Country. He played a mix of country tunes and oldies, very danceable stuff. Steven did not want to be the first couple on the dance floor, but I talked him into it. As soon as we started boogeying down, though, he was as into it as I was.

I even won a limbo contest. True, there were only two contestants. But still, a win’s a win. I said that I bend over backwards for H.A.L.O.

We stayed till the very end and even helped put away the chairs and tables. Our reward was a cake left over from the dessert table.

“We take the cake!” I said.

We really had the best time. We met some nice people and supported a good cause. For more information about H.A.L.O., you can find them on Facebook.

Now that I’ve written this and read it to Steven, he says it is so a proper blog post. Phew!

Giving Away Nieces’ Afghans

I had been noticing a flier posted at work about a Cabin Fever Party and Chinese Auction to benefit the Herkimer County Humane Society. I had recently donated an afghan and some scarves to H.A.L.O., the cat rescue organization, for a similar purpose, and thought to do the same for the Humane Society.

Regular readers know I love to donate my afghans. Anybody who was reading me in December (oh, I know, such a busy month; don’t worry about it) knows I owe three nieces afghans as Christmas presents, because I gave theirs (with their generous permission) to the Folts Home. I’ve been crocheting quite busily attempting to make up the lack but I’m not ahead of the game yet. I have not checked with the nieces, but I felt sure they would not mind waiting a little longer (in my defense, it’s not like I’ve never given them afghans).

So I went to the Humane Society’s Facebook page (I’m quite the Facebook aficionado) and asked would they like such a donation. They would indeed. I said I would drop it by their location soon.

Some years ago it was a thing to print out a circle with “TUIT” inside it. Then you said, “That thing you’re going to do when you get a round to it? Well, here’s a round tuit.” I need one of those. I let a week go by. I knew from somebody else asking on Facebook that the Humane Society was hoping to have all donations by the first week of March. I had a little leeway.

Steven and I rode over on Monday, our rare day off together. I picked out an afghan with Easter colors: turquoise blue and pink (it was the afghan previously destined for my niece Jenna — sorry, Jenna!). I also grabbed a few scarves. I think they are nice scarves.

We brought Tabby. We know they like dogs at the Humane Society. When we walked in, three dogs in cages immediately started barking at her. I think they were boy dogs and wanted her to be their girlfriend. Boy dogs usually do. They continued to bark as I dropped off my donation and wrote down my information. The lady asked me if we were together.

“Yes, we’re all together,” I said. “We like to bring our dog places.”

When we got back home I realized I did not have my purse. Rats! After first checking that I had not left it in the house to begin with (as I have been known to do), I drove back by myself. The three dogs in their cages did not bark. I told you they were barking at Tabby. It was really not too inconvenient; I just felt a little silly. I merely mention the event in case any readers have done something similar; now they can feel better that they’re not the only ones.

The Cabin Fever Party and Chinese Auction is Sunday, March 25 from two to five at the Frankfort VFW, 4274 Acme Rd. Steven and I intend to be there. Maybe I’ll even bid on the afghan. If I win it, I can give it to Jenna for Christmas.

Helping the Kitties

I’ve blogged about the Helping Animals Live Organization (H.A.L.O.), the no-kill, non-profit cat rescue based in Little Falls, NY. I briefly stopped by their last fundraiser on Saturday, so I thought I’d give them another shout out.

I had actually wanted to attend the fundraiser. It was a spaghetti dinner and sock hop. I asked on their Facebook page if people were dressing in ’50s styles and had even gone to the thrift store looking for a skirt I could put a poodle on (didn’t find one). Alas, Steven had to work.

The next fundraiser, also being publicized via Facebook, is a Chinese Auction. My favorite kind! I asked if they would like one of my afghans and maybe a few handmade scarves. They would. I emailed a lady named Sandy to arrange pick up. She said if I was at the sock hop, I could just bring the stuff then. It seemed the easiest thing just to drive over to the VFW in Mohawk, where the fundraiser was taking place.

The parking lot looked full till I was already past it on a one-way street (of course). I went around the block. Of course, few blocks in these villages are a straightforward square. I turned right and drove. I wondered if I would be writing a blog post about getting lost in Mohawk, a very small village I drive through almost every day of my life. No, two more right hand turns and I was where I thought I should be. The roads to get there were just a little longer than expected. I parked in front of the VFW and went in.

A lady at the door directed me to Sandy. She was very happy with the donations and disappointed I was not staying for the sock hop.

“I remember you were asking were people dressing up,” she said. I told her of my unsuccessful search for a skirt, and the lady I had first spoken to stood up to show me her awesome pink poodle skirt.

I explained that my husband was working, but I would probably attend the Chinese Auction, “That I can go to by myself; dinner and a dance I want a date for.” Sandy agreed.

The Chinese Auction is March 11 at Silverado, Marginal Road, Herkimer, NY. Bidding is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with drawing immediately afterward. Many local businesses have donated goods and/or gift certificates. H.A.L.O. has been posting the various donations on Facebook as they come in. Their page also has some fun pictures of the sock hop. Look up H.A.L.O. (with the periods) to like them on Facebook. Or you can visit their website:

Helping HALO

Saturday, despite the bad cold I’ve been complaining about for the last three or four posts, I accompanied Steven to the HALO Trash to Treasure Sale. I wanted to help the kitty cats, and I love to find treasures amongst other people’s trash.

I’ve blogged about HALO before, but it bears repeating. HALO is the Helping Animals Live Organization, a no kill, no cage, not for profit cat rescue based in Little Falls. They hold a number of fundraisers throughout the year, most memorably the HALO Hoedown at Silverado in Herkimer, which I believe I also blogged about.

The Trash to Treasure Sale was held in the Polish Home on South Washington Street in Herkimer. Entrance to the sale was through the back door, so no sneaking to the bar for a beer on my way through. That was OK; I was there to treasure hunt. The sale ran from 9 am to 4 pm, and we arrived shortly after three (I was moving slowly due to the above mentioned cold). As we walked through the door, a lady announced that everything was half price, books and stuffed toys free.

“Oh, they shouldn’t have told me that,” said a lady perusing the books. “I love to read!”

I love to read too, but I did not see much to tempt me (effects of the cold?). Then I saw The Frugal Gourmet Cooks With Wine. I love to cook with wine! Of course, the Frugal Gourmet probably puts it in the food. I’ve been meaning to try that.

Then I found an Oneida pizza tin in practically new condition. Steven found a couple of Santa Clauses and snowmen (can’t have too many of either of those). We also chose some pretty tins. We love to put Christmas presents in tins. When the lady added up our purchases, it came to a very attractive total.

A poster board was on display showing photos of some sweet cats and kittens. They need foster and adoptive homes for cats. I can’t have a cat in my house, because I am deathly allergic. But I support what HALO does, so I try to help as best I can, by spending money at their fundraisers and by giving them a little publicity in my humble blog. Um, I hope the second one helps.

For more information on HALO, visit their website at, or you can like them on Facebook.

HALO Hoedown

Sunday Steven and I went to the HALO Hoedown at Silverado, Marginal Road, Herkimer. HALO is the Helping Animals Live Organization, a no kill, no cage, not for profit cat shelter in Little Falls, NY. This was their third annual Hoedown. We had attended last year’s and enjoyed it. When I noticed it advertized again, I made a note.

We had a bad moment Sunday when Steven looked at the Community Calendar in the Telegram and saw the Hoedown listed for Saturday. I was sure it was Sunday. It was Sunday last year or I would not have been there (work schedule). For once, I managed to find something online (when it comes to computers, I am so twentieth century): HALO’s Facebook page (love that Facebook).

Misunderstanding cleared up, we headed over. The Hoedown had been going on for over an hour when we arrived. A large crowd seemed to be having a very good time. A lady at the door stamped our hands with a paw print after we’d paid our admission, in case we stepped out. That was a definite possibility for me, because it was warm in that place. I was foolishly wearing long sleeves. Oh well, who can predict how to dress this time of year?

We fought the crowd to get our tickets for the Chinese Auction. They offered a number of creatively put-together baskets. Two books, two coffee mugs, fancy tea and biscotti; two bottle of wine, cheese and candles; two DVDs with microwave popcorn. The cans you put the tickets in had labels telling the complete contents of the baskets. We passed on the gift cards but put in for a lovely picture of a rainbow. It’s always so fun to walk up and down deciding what you want to try for. I’m sad to report, we did not win anything. Then again, we had just purchased a number of really cool items at garage sales on Saturday. How much junk do we need (apparently more, because we keep buying it).

We found seats at the bar and settled down to enjoy the music. A number of talented musicians had volunteered their time for the event. We heard two groups, but I didn’t catch who they were. I drank a beer and took in the scene. It was quite a cross section of people, all ages, shapes and sizes. I saw a few cowboy hats, appropriate for the Silverado. Some people were two-stepping on the dance floor. I’d like to learn how to two step. Steven is not confident in his own abilities, but I’m fairly sure I can count to two.

We stayed long enough for some door prize drawings (again, we didn’t win), but left early enough to have some more of Sunday afternoon to enjoy. I later saw on Facebook (because of course I Liked HALO) that the fundraiser had been a resounding success. For more information about HALO check out their Facebook page or visit their website:

Can You Bear a Little More About DARE?

Friday I thought I’d better register for the DARE 5K since I had it in my head the price when up after the 12th. Of course I neglected to do anything about it Thursday the 11th.

I called Steven from work about 7 am and got the number of the Herkimer Police Department. I know they are very polite there. I called and said I wanted to register for the DARE Run. They immediately called someone to the phone. I neglected to ask if it was Officer Steven D. Elwood, the DARE officer. I asked if I could stop by the police station after work with the registration money.

“Will there be somebody there?” I asked. “Well, obviously there will be somebody there, it’s a police station. But will there be somebody there to take my DARE registration?” He assured me there would.

I got home around four and after I changed we put Tabby on the leash and in the car and rode over, first discussing exactly where the police department was. See, we don’t usually get in trouble with the cops. The worst Steven ever does is get a parking ticket for not putting money in the meter. He pays those by mail. Steven wondered if we should bring Tabby inside. I thought the police would be OK with a dog and might even try to recruit her for their K-9 unit. OK, I didn’t really think they’d try to recruit her, but don’t you think my jumpy dog would make a cute cop?

The sergeant at the desk (I didn’t get his name, but I knew by his stripes he was a sergeant) actually didn’t know anything about the DARE run, but found me the registration form and went to ask somebody what to do with the money. I filled out forms for myself and my nephew and paid the money. I noticed I actually had till August 15th before the price went up but was glad to get it taken care of.

Once, again, the DARE 5K is Saturday, Aug. 20, Jr. Fun Run at 8:30 am, 5K at 9:15. For more info, contact Officer Elwood at 315-866-4330, email or Herkimer Dare at See you there; I’m registered!

Another DARE-ing Post

I talked to my sister Diane on Thursday and confirmed that my nephew, Thomas, still intends to run the DARE 5K with me on August 20. That being the case, I thought I’d best stop pussy-footing around (so to speak) with 24-minute runs on minor hills and drag my butt up the hill to Herkimer County Community College (HCCC).

I ran up the back way, which is not the actual route of the DARE Run. It’s less steep and longer, therefore challenging but not as daunting. Still, once I started up, I felt fairly daunted.

I know I’ve blogged about running that route before and probably been more witty about it. For one thing, nothing much happened this time. As I ran through the residential area, I said hello to a man by his car and waved to another man sitting on his porch. I ran by the dorms and noted the sign, “Private Property No Trespassing,” so I didn’t . I saw a Campus Security vehicle and a red car driving away, so I thought maybe that was a trespasser. I made it to the top of the hill without mishap and started down the steep way. Ah, the view from the top. I kept noticing foot prints and “5K” spray painted on the road with arrows pointing in the opposite direction to where I was going.

I don’t much like running down a steep hill. I think when I run next time I’ll go up the steep side. At least I ran for thirty minutes. The 5K will probably take me a little longer at the rate I’m running lately, but I’ll be motivated.

The DARE 5K is Saturday, August 20, in Herkimer beginning and ending in front of the Historic Herkimer County Jail. The Jr. Fun Run begins at 8:30 am, the 5K at 9:15 am. For more information contact Ptlm. Steven D. Elwood at 315-866-4330 (the Police Department), or email, or Herkimer Dare at

Going to the Dogs

Steven noticed that the Herkimer County Humane Society was selling Mutt Strut t-shirts for $5. We had regretfully missed the Mutt Strut for reasons I can’t offhand recall, but we thought purchasing a t-shirt would be a good way to support the organization. The shirts could be purchased online, but we thought it would be more fun to drive out, plus making for a better blog post.

Steven is Facebook friends with the Humane Society and so knew they need such things as pet food, kitty litter, etc. When he stopped at Hannaford, he picked up some Purina Kitten Chow (their preferred brand).

Once I was home and showered, we put Tabby on her leash and in the car and drove out Route 5S in Mohawk. As usual, I noticed a walking/biking/running path to one side I’d like to explore one day. I think that is where they sometimes take the dogs for walks from the Humane Society. It is right across the street.

We got out of the car to the usual cacophony of barking. Tabby was instantly delighted with the place, because there were many good places to sniff. When we walked into the office, a little foxy-looking dog in a cage started yapping at us. Tabby graciously went up and sniffed noses with him. He stopped barking when she did that but began again as soon as she stopped. She’s such a flirt.

We bought our shirt and noticed some other fun stuff for sale like buttons encouraging pet adoption. I picked up a card and a couple of fliers: a list of household hazards for pets, some advice on training your dog, and the Humane Society Wish List for Christmas. I said I would put the wish list on my blog.

Christmas isn’t any time soon, of course, but the society could use any of these things at any time: blankets/sheets/comforters, cat litter (unscented, non-scoopable only), new carpet remnants, towels, antibacterial dishwashing liquid, brooms, Clorox bleach, garbage bags, hand soap, laundry detergent, paper towels, sponges, canned dog food (no gravy), cat treats, dog treats, Iams canned dog food (special diet, special request), cat toys, dog toys, postage stamps, rubber gloves, thank you cards, volunteers/foster homes.

Well, that added to my word count. The Humane Society is open Monday through Friday 11 am to 5 pm (closed Tuesday), Saturday and Sunday 12 to 4 pm. Phone 315-866-3255, fax 315-866-8086. Their website is or Email You can also like them on Facebook.