Lions Support Playground Project The Lavin family in New Jersey has public service in its blood. Out of 11 kids, three boys became firefighters like their dad, and Pat Lavin, now 61 and retired, was a career police officer and is a member of the Howell Township Lions Club. The Sandy Ground Project: Where Angels Play brought together Pat and his brother Bill, president of the New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association, in an opportunity to build 26 parks in memory of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting and to restore shoreline devastated by Superstorm Sandy in New Jersey, Connecticut and New York. Pat Lavin says Lions were “very responsive, eager to help” when they learned of the ambitious project. The first playground in Sea Bright was completed in March in memory of Anne Marie Murphy, a Sandy Hook teacher. Firefighters, police officers and volunteers including Lions worked together to construct a new playground where one had been destroyed during the storm. “This will surely put smiles on the children’s faces and at the same time, give some comfort to the victims’ families,” he says. Bill Lavin says firefighters are grateful for Lions’ participation. “Lions from Howell, Farmingdale and Neptune, New Jersey, have participated by raising funds, attending ground-breaking and ribboncutting ceremonies and providing photographs and documentation of the project. Our goal is to raise $3 million and complete all 26 playgrounds by December 13, the anniversary of the tragedy.” Howell Township Lions have also pledged 20 percent of funds raised from the club’s annual golf outing to the playground project. Last year, Lions raised more than $4,000 to pay for vision and diabetes care in the community as well as support for breast cancer survivors. To learn more, visit www.thesandygroundproject.org. Apples, Apples Everywhere… Heralding the arrival of fall, Lions in Dexter, Michigan, celebrate apples in all their tasty forms. Apple cider, apple pie, apple doughnuts, apples plain or coated in caramel—Lions’ Apple Daze doesn’t lack for apples. Or people, either. One of the biggest fundraisers Lions sponsor, second only to the club’s Christmas tree sale, Apple Daze last year raised $4,000. Profits are put back into the community by Lions, who give scholarships, donate eyeglasses, screen schoolchildren, and support Leader Dogs and Paws with a Cause, which trains assistance dogs. “Despite the chilly weather, we had a lot of people. I bet I was the warmest person there!” says Lion Ray Lowery of wearing a furry lion costume to publicize the club. “It’s a lot of fun interacting with the kids as well as the teens and adults. The kids’ faces just light up.” In addition to apples, there were hayrides, a bounce house, miniature golf, arts and crafts booths, a classic car show and one of the biggest hits, a pie-eating contest. Nineteen daring residents gobbled up apple pies without using their hands. “Anyone from 6 to adult can participate,” says Lowery. It was, he declares, “rather messy.” Winners received gift certificates for ice cream and a pie of a different sort—pizza.
Published by International Association of Lions Clubs . View All Articles.
This page can be found at http://digital.lionmagazine.org/article/Raising+Funds/1449653/166553/article.html.