Etcetera - 04/13/11

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Donors of $1,000 or more to Rotary International's Annual Programs Fund, PolioPlus or the Humanitarian Grants Program, are named Paul Harris Fellows. John Zerba became Milton-Freewater Rotary Club's 48th Fellow when the community service group accumulated the funds from its Brag Board and his name was drawn. John will receive a commemorative certificate and pin for the gift to the organization's foundation.

Rotarian Robby Robbins, who submits reports of club activities to the U-B, introduced Jerry Cummins at a recent meeting. Jerry is balloonmeister for the 37th Walla Walla Balloon Stampede, which will be May 13-15 at the Walla Walla Fairgrounds. Lynn Cummins, Jerry's wife and crew chief, was also at the meeting.

Jerry has participated in the stampede for 23 years. He said the first balloon event was The Walla Walla Pea Pickin' Festival." The largest number of balloons to turn out for the event was 69. This year they expect 43.

A Balloon-A-Thon, is part of the action. It's a triathlon of sorts with several teams committed so far. Friendly competition is expected between Windermere Realty and Coldwell Banker, Rotary and Exchange service clubs, Cascade Natural Gas and Columbia REA. Local charities benefit from all donations to the event. Those attending can participate in daily Main Stage entertainment, a Friday night community reception, Saturday Car Show and Nite Glow and Sunday pancake breakfast. More information is online at www.balloonstampede.com

Folks in the community are banding together to build a youth sports complex in Milton-Freewater on farmland at the corner of Grant and Cemetery roads. An all-you-can-eat spaghetti feed and a live and silent auction will help raise funds toward this project, said Mark Scudder, president of the M-F Youth Sports Complex group. The event will be from 5-8 p.m. April 16 at the Milton-Freewater Junior Show/Posse Grounds, off Highway 11, by Bordertown Feed & Supply. Cost of the meal is $6 for adults, $4 for children 5-11 and $2 for those under age 5.

A motorcycle poker run will begin at 3 p.m. and is $5 per hand. It takes off and ends at the show grounds. Organizers plan to raise funds in order to have a 501c organization with a board; full, detailed and itemized construction costs to build the complex and hire a professional grant writer, Mark said. Their original goal was to raise $5,000, which would fund the aforementioned goals. A donor just came forward with $2,500 so they can buy the construction drawings, which are coming from Cal Ripken Jr. Design, said Mark. The complex is on Facebook. Organizers hope to break ground this fall after wheat harvest on land that Joe Frazier is selling to them.

For information, call Mark at 509-520-5403 or John Kain at 509-386-7521.

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