Special event raises funds for McDonald House
A special event this weekend will likely raise enough money to make a dream in memory of a daughter come true.
For Gary and Linda Sweet and their family, the days of dealing with a horrible nightmare a few years back turned into trying to find ways of dealing up a dream, a way in which they could help others.
They and their family and friends settled on a dream in particular last winter. They decided in Niki Sweet’s memory, they wanted to raise $10,000 and donate the entire amount toward a room in the Ronald McDonald House at Motts Children Hospital in Ann Arbor.
Linda Sweet explained that there is a cardiac pediatric addition with 12 rooms to be furnished for Ronald McDonald’s “guests” right inside the hospital, and “this will furnish one of them.”
The actual cost of a room is $25,000, she explained, adding, “Back when Maybelle Crisler passed away, she had left $15,000 in Niki’s memory.” Maybelle Crisler was the owner of the Nestle Inn in Reed City.
“Our goal was to be able to see an ‘In Memory of Niki Sweet’ sign on a room for other families needing shelter during one of the hardest times of their lives. It was our’s, and we know what kindness meant then, and what it still means today.”
It was decided that scrapbooking and card-making just might be the ultimate fundraiser, and it has been. They hoped to reach their $10,000 goal by November. They have since December already surpassed it. As of Sunday night, the amount raised had topped $11,164. There is about $3,000 needed for expenses.
This Friday and Saturday, July 15-16, the ultimate in scrapbooking and cardmaking is about to be a happening at Green Township Hall near Paris (MI).
The public is invited, and Linda said she anticipates between 60-70 people will take part in the action.
“There will be raffles and displays, all sorts of things to make, and we’ll be busy starting at 7 a.m. on both days and finish up when we finish up. About 7 p.m. Saturday, we’ll have cake, Jello, punch, coffee and the raffles,” she explained.
Then, instead of continuing until November as originally planned, it has been decided this will be the last monthly gathering.
Linda and Sandy Choate have been “working non-stop trying to make 1,800 to 2,000 cards, so people will be able to get them and make then up for Christmas, but it’s important for now for this to be our last monthly meeting. At least for now.”
In addition, a “Nickels for Niki” fundraising activity brought in even more donations to add to the goal, as did collecting aluminum tabs for recycling.
Linda said Niki always called the Ronald McDonald House they stayed in “her home away from home.”
The event at the end of this week will be “Christmas in July,” and Linda stressed it’s all about Niki’s legend of love. “When she was diagnosed with acute lymphatic leukemia in 1987.
“Remember this - we learned a few years ago that our family is absolutely number one in our life.” Without saying it, she asks that you make your’s the same.
For more information on this event, contact Linda at (231) 629-7203.