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Friday, May 6, 2016

Dozens of chairs up for auction at second annual Chairish the Children fundraiser

Friday, May 4, 2012

Decorated by the anonymous "Night Stocking" group that has struck a number of trees around Greencastle, "Yarn Garden" is one of the conversation pieces of this year's "Chairish the Children" fundraiser.
The second annual Chairish the Children fundraiser for Family Support Service has not yet raised a dime. It won't even take place until Friday, May 11, but Executive Director Cari Cox already sees the event as a big success for the organization.

"The response, in chairs, has been more than I could have ever expected," Cox said.

In the event's first year, organizers expected to get a dozen chairs at best, and wound up with 22. This year, the number has swelled to 33 as of May 4, with a week left for more donations to come in.

In the second year, Cox said many of the chair themes have focused in on Family Support Services and its goals of preventing child abuse and childhood hunger.

"It's really a celebration of children and families -- a way to raise some discretionary funds for our programs," Cox said. "The staff looks forward to it and our board members get into it."

This year's event will take place from 6-8:30 p.m. at the Dixie Chopper Business Center at the Putnam County Airport. Entertainment from Fig's Follies will run from 6-8 p.m. with hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar at the same time.

From 6:30-7:30 p.m., Greencastle High School student and "strolling entertainer" Brockman Guinee will perform juggling, magic, hand tricks and unicycle riding.

Silent auction bidding closes at 7:45 p.m., with the awards presentation and closing from 8-8:30 p.m. This period will include the annual Bessie Rector Award, child abuse prevention poster winners, recognition of Chairish the Children participants and the winning chair bids announced.

Cox said she is especially pleased with the involvement of students at various levels in this year's event. Students from Reelsville, Central, Fillmore and Cloverdale elementaries all took part in the poster contest.

A number of DePauw organizations as well as students in Aaron Allee's North Putnam Middle School art class designed and donated chairs.

The musically-themed "A Child's Laughter" chair was designed and donated by Putnam County Comprehensive Services.
"The groups have really put a lot of time into it," Cox said. "I'm really impressed with the DePauw student organizations and with the North Putnam Middle School group. We have some young adults in our community who are really thinking about the issues we face."

The issues Family Support Services faces now also include budget shortfalls. In trying to serve Putnam, Owen, Montgomery and Boone counties, the money from state and federal agencies simply is not enough. Chairish the Children is a way to try and bridge the funding gap.

Food for the evening is prepared and provided by the Town and Country; Family, Friends and Fun; and Boone Dock Pals extension homemakers.

To help make this year's event more profitable for FSS, a number of donors have helped out with the event with either free or reduced-cost services.

White Cleaners is steaming all the table covers for free. Dixie Chopper is providing the space. Jim Hardwick is DJ'ing the event at a reduced cost.

Additionally, DePauw's Bonner Scholar program has granted Family Support Services $925 to help with expenses of putting on the program.

For a look at the chairs up for auction, visit bannergraphic.com/gallery/chairish12.

The brightest entry in this year's Chairish the Children event aims to shine a light -- more like 60 of them -- on childhood neglect. North Putnam Middle School art students Bailey Allen, Jake Holtz, Blake Everts and Adri Millican designed this chair.
An RSVP for the event is preferred, but not required, by contacting 653-4820 or pcfss@airhop.com.

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