Friday, Aug 17, 2018
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Barbara Hendel

ON THE TOWN

Assistance dogs have their day at fund-raiser

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    Tina Calhoun with General at Dealin' for Dogs.

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    Artist Brenda Kern with one of her quit designs during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show.

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    Artist Ed Bond during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show Friday, January 26 in Toledo.

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    Artists Susan Pope, left, and Dorothy McDougal during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show.

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    Artist Anne French with one of her quilt designs during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show.

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    Artist Linda Hill during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show.

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    Artist Deborah Kopka, left, and program director Penny McCloskey during the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show.

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    Service dog Cedar during the Dealin' for Dogs benefit.

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    Chairman Jenni Yoder with dog General during Dealin’ for Dogs, a fund-raiser hosted by Assistance Dogs for Achieving Independence, a program of The Ability Center, in the Student Health and Activities Center at Owens Community College.

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    Models pose during A Story From Our Hive: A Unique Night Out With A Story Told Through Hair, at Salvatore Capelli in Levis Commons.

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    Honorary chairmen Tim and Jenni Yoder attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit at Owens Community College in Perrysburg.

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    Lesley Riker, left, Robert Johnson, center, and Cindy Celusta attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit.

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    Vivian Shubeta and J.P. Houstin attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit at Owens Community College in Perrysburg.

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    SOC dogs27p Katie Shelley, left, her two-year-old service Labrador Petunia, and Tim Harrington, Director of the Ability Center of Greater Toledo, attend Dealin’ for Dogs.

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    Greg Zink and Samantha Kennedy try their hands at cards during Dealin’ for Dogs.

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    Deb Wagner and her three-year-old service Labrador Emma attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit.

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    John and Kathy Ricketts attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit at Owens Community College in Perrysburg.

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    Suzette and Steve Biela attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit at Owens Community College in Perrysburg.

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    Amy Kerchevall holds Comet, a male 10-week-old Labrador in need of a foster home, during the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit.

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    Liz Morrison, her four-year-old service Labrador Cedar, center, and Scott Morrison attend the Dealin’ for Dogs benefit.

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DEALIN’ for Dogs, a fund-raiser hosted by Assistance Dogs for Achieving Independence, a program of the Ability Center, was held at the Student Health and Activities Center at Owens Community College.

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Tina Calhoun with General at Dealin' for Dogs.

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Emcee Lissa Guyton, of WTVG-TV, Channel 13, welcomed everyone. Tim Harrington, executive director, thanked everyone for their support and introduced honorary chairmen Tim and Jenny Yoder, who hosted the first Dealin' for Dogs in their backyard in 2006. Their son Tyler received the first assistance dog, Duke, from ADAI in 2000. 

“Duke gave Tyler much more than physical assistance,” Mrs. Yoder said. “Tyler became more independent, social, and confident, thus affecting our entire family. He has had two more ‘chick magnets,’ Tucker and now Brady, and our family will be forever grateful.”

The $30,000 raised will help children and adults with disabilities achieve greater independence with the help of therapy dogs trained to assist with individual’s daily needs, including opening doors, carrying items, helping people up from falls, and providing emotional support. ADAI relies on donations, grants, and fund-raisers.

Peppy music provided by Inside Voices and Tom Lewis (Toledo Tom) filled the air as the about 400 supporters took in the scene. Big dice and colorful posters decorated the room, thanks to auxiliary member Cookie Westmeyer, her brothers Jerome and Phil Westmeyer, and friend Randy Andrew. Lee Winters Florist added colorful arrangements, too.

Many guests tried their luck at casino-style games for raffle tickets: blackjack, poker, Let it Ride, and Big Six.

Other games of chance included a Lucky Card raffle for a necklace valued at $400 from J. Foster Jewelers; Go Fetch (ADAI dogs fetched tennis balls thrown in a pool, and the ones labeled with pawprints won a prize, of course, selected by the dog); Crap Shoot (make three baskets and win a prize); Wine Toss (you ring it; you win it), and a Lottery Tree raffle sponsored by the Ability Center Auxiliary and longtime member Alice Schorling.

The Yoder team won the Dog Race and named the new assistance-dog-in-training — a yellow lab pup — General, in honor of their connection to the Anthony Wayne Generals, since everyone on the team either graduated from Anthony Wayne or had kids who attended.

Shopping included a silent auction and live auctions with Jim Heller, Toledo Walleye and Mud Hens tickets, a signature necklace from Harold Jaffe Jewelers, a dinner with wines at Malcolm and Peggy Richards’ home, a 12-year ladder of Marilyn Napa Valley Merlot from the Richards, a ride with a ranger at an area Metropark, a framed watercolor by Leone Saxton of Battle Creek, Mich., and a 5-liter bottle of 2006 Ferrari-Carano PreVail Back Forty cabernet sauvignon from Alexander Valley Vineyards.

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A photo booth caught moments of guests holding pups in training.

Sating appetites were Bruce and Tracy Saba of Saba's Bistro and TJ's Cookout & Catering. Home-style cooking including pulled pork and beef, corn casserole topped with gooey cheese, pasta, and more. A big table of desserts sated sweet tooths, and Maddie and Bella coffee quenched thirsts. Spirited beverages from Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits were there for purchase.

Thanks go to the numerous sponsors including Mark Feldstein & Associates Inc., Buckeye Broadband, Supplemental Staffing, Franklin Park at the Promenade Shops, The Andersons, Bill and Susan Logie, HCR ManorCare, A-Gas, Great Lakes Insurance Partners, Waterford Bank, Rudolph Libbe Inc., The Trust Company, ProMedica, First Federal Bank, Mira & Kolena, Invisible Fence of Northwest Ohio, and Karnik Pet Lodge. There were also media sponsors and many in-kind donors.

For information on services, volunteering, and upcoming events, go to abilitycenter.org.

AREA cancer survivors shared stories of their cancer journeys at the Victory Center Cancer Survivor Art Show. The sixth annual event, held at the Victory Center on Central Avenue, was a two-day soiree. Pieces ranged from contemplative to joyful to inspirational expressed through fine art, arts and crafts including glass mosaic, jewelry, knitting, collage, watercolor, ink, and acrylics.

Featured survivor artist was Deborah Kopka of Perrysburg, a botanical artist since 1993 who has taught watercolor and mixed media at the Toledo Museum of Art and various universities and community colleges. She has also authored several children’s books.

Most of the art was created during or as a result of the Victory Center's free art therapy program, Healthy Spirit Art Therapy, for area cancer patients and survivors led by local art therapist Areka Foster.

A STORY From Our Hive: A Unique Night Out With A Story Told Through Hair was at Salvatore Capelli Hair Spa and Beauty Lounge at Levis Commons.

“We created this event to tell our story through hair,” shop owner Cindi Kristine said. The free event included appetizers, champagne, and raffles. A portion of gift certificate specials and beauty opportunities sales were donated to Family House of Toledo, the areas only homeless shelter for the entire family. The event raised $1,000.

Barbara Hendel is The Blade's Society Editor. Contact her at bhendel@theblade.com or call 419-724-6124.

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