by Chuck Jones
Last Saturday night (11/10/12), we had our annual November Trivia Night that we offer as a fundraiser for the local Peoria, IL area camps that are sponsored by the Friends of Retreat and Refresh Stroke Camp. We have been doing this a couple times a year for the past 5 years. We had almost 200 people participate this night and we are eternally grateful for their support. We provide food, beverages, snacks, fun and a chance to win many prizes. This year we had 24 tables seating eight people per table.
This is one of the raffle basket tables we made and raffled off during the night. Our board of directors make many raffle baskets through donations from
local businesses or their own pocketbooks and we raffle them off
through ticket sales. All proceeds go towards next years camps.
The most popular prize was Amazon's Kindle Fire electronic tablet
donated by one of the board members. It drew a record breaking 388
Two other major items raffled were a Kamado Joe ceramic grill donated by Jerime Gendron with Gendron's Landscaping, and a 5.5 cubic foot Danby brand freezer that Shermans gave us a good discount on. The Kamado Joe ceramic grill is similar to the Green Egg ceramic grill, if you are familiar with that. A $200 meat bundle was included with the freezer that consisted of a certificate for a pork package, donated by Echo Valley Meats, and an additional $100 gift card to Echo Valley
donated by Jerime Gendron. A very special thanks to Jerime for his generosity!!!!!!
Our Master of ceremonies is Loy Sloan who has been doing Trivia Night events for us as well as for other organizations in the Peoria area. This is a picture of Loy next to Marylee Nunley, the Executive Director of the camp, giving the opening announcements and rules of the game.
It is a good time for meeting new and old friends and for just catching up on each other lives between contest rounds.
"You should hold you hand like this as you speak Italian", explains Jan Jahnel.
This happy couple, Mary Kay and Tom Pilat, is poised and ready for the first round.
"Bring it on Loy!"
They're smiling now but let's see if they are after the next eight grueling rounds.
"Now let me see", ponders answer sheet checker Darlene Sloan as she checks over table 24's final answers. "Is the answer Abraham Lincoln? No, it's Wile E Coyote!"
"Ok, enough of the jokes", says Debbie Morse, Jennifer's mother. "Just tell me, did I win the Kindle or not?"
Stacy Helle and Jennifer Ulm are ready to provide support and counseling in case she doesn't. Get ready girls.
"Now, don't get me started, Debbie", exclaims Darlene. "I think I'll win the Kindle."
"Hah! You're both wrong", triumphs Kelly Imhoff. "I won it, and here it is!"
That's her husband Sanford in the background thinking, "Hot Dog! Now I can watch internet football feeds at the dinner table!"
Friends at my table are, from left to right: Debbie Morse, Jennifer's mother; Jennifer Ulm, Marylee's daughter-in-law, a board member and a frequent camp volunteer; Marylee Nunley and John Nunley, co-founders of the Retreat and Refresh Stroke Camp. Without John's and Marylee's love and energy this camp would not exist.
Also at the table with me but not pictured were Rodney Herrick, Marylee's brother; Mary (Granny) Herrick, Marylee's mother, and Stacy Helle, a friend of Jennifer's.
Two other camp staff personnel not pictured, who were there and we can't do without, but with equal love and energy are Larry Schaer, Associate Director and board member, and Lauren Kramer, Coordinator of Support Services, also a board member. They were in charge of registering the contestants.
And seven other volunteers who make this Trivia Night a success are Darlene Sloan, Sarah Christy, a board member, and her husband Boyd Christy both who are very active in camp events and are co-founders also; Georgia Morris and her daughter, Cheri, both of whom are board members and very active in camp activities. Also a very special thanks to Jennifer Lindgren and her friend Mark who were ticket sellers, along with Georgia and Cheri. Jennifer and Mark have been selling tickets at our Trivia Nights since its inception. Thanks you two! Your help means a lot to us. No tickets no prizes, right? You helped make, maybe, 30 people very happy.
Thank you, all who attended this event, this year and past years. Your
enthusiasm and support is what keeps us going from year to year and
gives hope and fun to hundreds of stroke survivors throughout our