Kremmling: Dinner celebrates love, supports local health care
February 8, 2008
Sweethearts and singles searching for a romantic evening are invited to come out to enjoy a nice dinner, music and dancing Saturday night at the Middle Park Fairgrounds while they help support Kremmling Memorial Hospital District’s Auxiliary and its Scholarship Fund.The event includes a silent auction with items donated by merchants from all over the county, a raffle, and DJ music for the second year provided by Michael Turner and Turner Productions. Silent auction items include dinner for two at Latigo Guest Ranch, night stays at local cabins, several John Deere items, wines, clothing, savings bonds, Showboat pies and tons of gift certificates.This year’s raffle items are two gorgeous afghans pieced together by long-time Kremmling resident Louise Henry. Henry, who is also a loyal advocate of KMHD and the Auxiliary, estimates she’s been crocheting for about 50 years. She learned the craft on her own at age 12 and donates the blankets not only for the raffle, but on a regular basis for long-term care patients at the hospital simply because they can use ’em.Henry says the works of art can take everywhere from a couple weeks to half a year to create and that she hopes these two raffled quilts keep the winners warm for many winters to come. Raffle tickets are $1 or six for $5.This is the first year the auxiliary has hired a professional caterer for the Sweetheart supper, with Sherry Kent of Showboat Catering putting together homemade specialties and students from West Grand Schools’ El Pomar Youth in Community Service group helping set up the event, serve the food and clean up afterward.The meal begins with bruschettas and sausage-stuffed mushrooms from Showboat, followed by Caesar salad and homemade breads. Main entres include cavatappi alfredo and chicken Cordon Bleu, served with glazed baby carrots and finished off with Kahlua ice-cream pie.Proceeds help the hospital and go toward scholarships for students from both West Grand and East Grand Schools who are pursuing a career in the health care field. Scholarship applications need to be submitted by April 2 and may be inquired about at the schools.The KMHD Auxiliary, established in the mid-1970s when the hospital’s new addition was built, formed to support the hospital in its goal of keeping up with today’s advancements in the health care field. The auxiliary helps KMHD raise funds to purchase necessary equipment through various fundraisers throughout the year like the Sweetheart Dinner & Dance. Another big event each year is the Birthday Calendar Drive going on right now. The group also organizes activities and schedules regular visits to long-term care patients.Last year, the Auxiliary raised more than $9,000, sharing the funds among three, $1,000 scholarships to Grand County students in addition to more than $6,000 for equipment and goods for the hospital and its guests, including $1,353 for upkeep of the hospital’s aviary, $300 for Long-Term Care (LTC) Christmas presents and a new Christmas tree for the hospital, $100 toward decorations for the Employee Christmas party, $400 for LTC birthday remembrances and bibs, $500 scholarship assistance to an employee for nursing school, $2,400 for two INR machines (INR machines allow patients that must take blood thinners to test their own blood thickness to prevent blood clots), $280 toward bicycle helmets for West Grand Elementary students, $270 toward a license for an LPN, $493 for an Otoscope for the clinic, $150 for the hospital history committee and $407 for acupuncture equipment.So far in 2008, the Auxiliary has agreed to purchase a fingertip Pulse Oximeter for the specialty clinic, dishes and silverware for the dietary department, an IV Start for pediatric patients in the emergency room and a dental box for patients who end up at the ER with dental trauma. Additional needs from the Auxiliary include funding for new equipment for the physical therapy department.Current officers are President Cindy Callahan, co-vice presidents Debra Pope and Nancy Wannamaker, Secretary Sherri Solawetz, Treasurer Leslie Jones, Parlimentarian Laureen Myers (who has been a member for more than 30 years) and member Kym Colvin. Membership consists mostly hospital employees but is open to anyone.With membership waning the auxiliary in danger of vanishing if it cannot maintain a healthy membership. All members need is a big heart and their attendance. The KMHD Auxiliary meets at 2 p.m. the second Wednesday of the month in the KMHD Conference Room. Officer elections take place this month for 2008.