NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER 2014 
DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT DONATES TO LOCAL FOOD PANTRIES

ST. JOHNS THE BAPTIST CATHOLIC CHURCH FOOD PANTRY $1000

FIRST UNITED METHODIST CHURCH $1000

HOLY FAITH EPISCOPAL CHURCH   $1000

$500.00 DONATIONS GIVEN IN NOVEMBER AND DECEMBER

The approaching holidays puts extra pressure on local food pantries to restock their shelves so they can continue to assist local families in need. The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop members voted to give $500 checks to the food pantries of The First United Methodist Church, St. John’s the Baptist Catholic Church, and Holy Faith Episcopal Church. It is their hope that no local families will be hungry over the next few months. 

Left: Thrift Shop volunteers Eileen Toney, Barbara Brown, and Betsy Scharf present checks to Sharon Miller, First United Methodist Church, Walter Flak, St. John’s the Baptist Catholic Church, and Dale Meaham, Holy Faith Episcopal Church   Photo and article:Joann McCullough
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NOVEMBER 2014
DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT ASSISTS LOCAL WOMAN

Cristine Lugo, co-owner of Penn Station restaurant, received news a few weeks ago that she has a rare form
 of cancer, called poleythemia. Some days it’s difficult for her to get out of bed as fatigue takes it toll. Fortunately her husband, Carlos, is capable of taking over the daily operations of the restaurant as well as his role as head chef.  Lugo is receiving a new experimental drug which requires several injections and has brought  this young mother of two boys hope for the future . Being a small business owner, Lugo does not have medical insurance and is facing thousands of dollars for medical treatment. The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop men and women presented her with a $1,000 check to help offset her mounting bills.
 

Photo by Joann McCullough

Left:Elaine Huett and Melissa Duke, Thrift Shop volunteers present check to Cristine Lugo.

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NOVEMBER 2014

“COPS FOR KIDS” PROGRAM RECEIVES $500 CHECK FROM DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP

  

Police Chief Joanne Black and Lt. Sue Webb were joined by Officer James Roberts at the entrance to the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop on “Black Friday” to receive a $500 check from thrift shop volunteers to used for their December 16th “Cops for Kids”. Chief Black gave details of this year’s event which will include twenty to twenty-two Dunnellon children between the ages of 6 and 12 who have been recommended by the Boys and Girls Club and local school officials. 

This annual pre-Christmas day of fun will begin with the children being transported by Mayor Nathan Whitt’s bus to the Blue Gator Restaurant for dinner, then whisked off to Walmart where officers and City Hall employees will partner up with a child to take them shopping. The children are assisted with creating a gift list and then accompanied through the store to purchase an item for themselves and one for each member of their family. Gifts are wrapped and tagged on the premises, the children given cookies provided by KFC, water by Aaron’s, a meal coupon for their siblings from Sonic, popcorn and a movie as well as a complete turkey dinner to take home. The day ends with parents arriving to take the children home, well fed and excited with presents in hand.    Photo by Joann McCullough 

Left:  Lt. Sue Webb, Betsy Scharf, Thrift Shop volunteer, Chief Joanne Black, Officer James Roberts, and Arlene Untch, Thrift Shop volunteer
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NOVEMBER 14
FIRE & RESCUE CHILDRENS CHRISTMAS PARTY
  

Every December, the Dunnellon Fire and Rescue Service sponsor an annual dinner and gift giving for needy area families and are expected to serve at least 600 this year. The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies and gentlemen presented the Department with a $1,000 check continuing their support for this special Christmas dinner event. Bill Wetworth, coordinator for the event, took a few minutes from his busy schedule to tell of a recent visit to a local business hoping for a donation and was surprised to be thanked by the young business owner. As she handed Wetmore a check, she just beamed as she told him she attended one of their Christmas dinner/gift giving parties as a child and she will never forget how thrilled she was to be given a beautiful tricycle.  Wetmore said with a smile, this was only one of the many stories he hears every day and it’s apparent this event makes a difference in local people’s lives. Raising money for this annual tradition is obviously is a labor. 

The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop has been donating to the Fire and Rescue event for many years and is one of it’s largest contributors. The Thrift Shop, located at 20359 E. Pennsylvania Avenue next to Regions Bank, is staffed entirely by volunteers and votes monthly where to donate their profits. They are also proud to point out they now have two gentlemen who have joined their ranks.

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OCTOBER 2014
VOICES FOR CHILDREN
ACCEPTS $500 DONATION FROM DUNNELLON COMMUNTY THRIFT VOLUNTEERS        
 

 

Sue Carpenter, representative from Voices for Children, accepted a $500 donation from the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop volunteers for Angel Tree gifts. The volunteers asked that $25 gift certificates be purchased and given to Dunnellon children who are in custody of the state, the Fifth Judicial Circuit. The annual Angel Tree gift giving is to ensure these children who are already going through a difficult time in their lives, will not be the forgotten during the holidays.  

Photo by Joann McCullough

Left to right:

Marie Wells and Betty Poole, Thrift Shop volunteers present check to Sue Carpenter

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SEPTEMBER 2014

 DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP DONATES TO DUNNELLON POLICE DEPARTMENT PROGRAMS

 

The ladies and gentlemen of the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop presented a check to Chief Joanne Black for special needs of the Dunnellon Police Department. Of the $750 check, $500 was designated for any equipment/vests needed by the officers and $250 for equipment for the free R.A.D. (Rape Aggression Defense) program offered through the department. Anyone interested in the defense classes can contact the Dunnellon Police Department for dates and complete information.  

Left:

Phyllis Knight and Carmen Fisher, Thrift Shop volunteers present check to Chief Joanne Black and Sgt. Robin Robinson    Photo by Joann McCullough 

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SEPTEMBER 2014

             DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP DONATES TO HISTORIC VILLAGE SHOPPES

 

September 19th, The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies and gentlemen handed Candy Craig, President of the Historic Village Shoppes, a $1,000 check to help pay for the Victorian Holiday ice slide for area children. It was brought up at their meeting that this was a highlight of the November “Holiday” for many children who have never experienced ice, let alone slide down an “ice hill”. Photographs printed in last year’s Riverland News “Victorian Holiday” issue showed the delight on many children’s faces and some adults as well.  

Left:

Karen Keen and Barbara Hayes presenting check to Candy Craig, Historic Village Shoppes
Photo by Joann McCullough
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                                               SEPTEMBER 2014
               DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP DONATES TO COVENANT CHILDREN’S HOME

 

Several Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies visited the Dunnellon Convenant Children’s Home September 19th for a tour of the facility and presented a $500 check to Tom McMurry, Executive Director. Before leaving, two of the resident teen age girls returned and gave the ladies a vivid description of their exciting shopping trip searching for homecoming gowns. 

Photo by Joann McCullough 

Left:  

Tess Leminos and Arline Keenam, Thrift Shop volunteers present check to Tom McMurry, Executive Director

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AUGUST 2014

      DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP DONATES $1,000 TO “FAMILIES IN NEED” PROGRAM

  

 Presenting a $1,000 check are Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop volunteers Carol Durand and Dottie Kennebrew to Jan DeWitt of the Dunnellon based “Families in Need” program. 

Photograph by Joann McCullough

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JULY
2014

DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP DONATES TO THREE WOMEN FACING FINANCIAL DIFFICULTIES DUE TO MEDICAL PROBLEMS 

Three area women came to the attention of the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies this past month and were presented checks on June 30th. Mandy Benzing is a single mom with two children living at home and had big hopes of beginning a service dog training business. It was becoming a reality but on the very day she and her business partner, Amy Derry, received their 501(c)3 status was given the news she had acute Myeloid Leukemia. It has been an uphill battle since. Her bone marrow treatment is scheduled for early July. When told the Thrift Shop ladies voted to give her $1,000 toward medical expenses, she was almost speechless and admitted she didn’t know the shop existed even though her son takes karate lessons across the street.

 

The second recipient is well known in the Dunnellon community having worked at the Chamber of Commerce for a few years. Mitze Robinson has a rare disease called sceromyxedema, only 30 known cases in the country, which has made it very difficult to get financial assistance. She and husband Jerry are taking a day at a time and were very grateful for the $500 gift toward her expenses. For in depth information outlining Robinson’s illness and difficulties, see the front page article in the July 3rd edition of the Riverland News.

 

The third young lady, Elizabeth Rezack, mother of two little boys, has recently undergone surgery to remove arteriovenous malformations discovered after two emergency room visits for intense headaches and then a referral to Shands in Gainesville. There she underwent two procedures which left her with seizures and the inability to speak. Treatments are continuing at Shands which means her partner, William Warner, is juggling trips to Gainesville to be with her while making certain the children are looked after. This leaves very little time for his “Just-in-Tyme” landscaping/yard maintenance business, their only source of income. One of the Thrift Shop ladies brought their plight to the attention of the membership and a surprised Rezack was delighted to learn the ladies voted to give them $1,000 toward their mounting expenses.

 

Photo called “Mindy”

Left to right:

Thrift Shop volunteers Barbara Hayes and Karen Keen, president, presents check to Mandy Benzing and sons Gabriel and Armand. 

Photo called “2 Mitze”

Thrift Shop volunteers Jan Salter and summer intern Olivia Pryor present check to Mitze Robinson and husband Jerry. 

Photo called “3 Elizabeth

Thrift Shop volunteers Jan Pinkerton and Betty Poole present check to Elizabeth Rezack, William Warner and their sons William and Jeffrey.
Photographs by Joann McCullough
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                                                                               JULY 2014

    DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP FUNDS LOCAL FOOD PANTRIES 

Summertime in Dunnellon doesn’t always mean “the living is easy” as local food pantries are well aware. Donations tend to be down this time of year and yet demand remains high. Knowing this, the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies voted this month to give $500 checks to each of the local church food pantries. First United Methodist Church’s Pastor Eddie Fulford  mentioned their shelves were almost bare and this check will certainly help fill them again. Dale Meehan, Holy Faith Episcopal Church at Blue Cove food pantry coordinator, Sandy Zak and Walter Fleck, St. John the Baptist Catholic Church food pantry coordinators thanked the volunteers for their years of support which continues to help them feed the hungry in this community.  

 

Presenting check on behalf of the Thrift Shop from left to right are volunteers

Beverly Carroll and Tess Lemnios to Holy Faith Episcopal food pantry coordinator Dale Meehan

 

Presenting check from left to right are volunteers Carmen Fisher and Miller Schaedel

to First United Methodist Church minister Eddie Fulford.

 

Presenting check from left to right are Thrift Shop volunteers Mitch Tyre and Kris Tyre to 

St. John’s the Baptist

Photos by Joann McCullough
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JULY 2014

DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT DONATES TO “CHRISTIAN IN ACTION”

Sue LeBrun, newly appointed Vice President of “Christian in Action”, spoke to the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies at their monthly meeting July 15th. Her passion for helping those less fortunate left an impression. This organization was begun to augment items available from local food banks and cannot be purchased with food stamps. It distributes clothing, toiletries, personal grooming products, dish and laundry detergents to families and individ
uals who qualify under federal guidelines. 

 

The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies voted to donate $1,000 to help stock their shelves. When notified of the size of the donation, LeBrun was speechless and moved to tears.  She exclaimed “this will buy enough items to take care of the next three months.” In making the donation, the thrift shop ladies indicated they would like to dedicate this to the late, long time resident Geri Davis in recognition of her charitable works and numerous contributions to the Dunnellon community. It was Geri Davis’ favorite project and she and LeBrun worked tirelessly to keep it going since it began in Nov. 2012.

 

“Christian in Action”, currently qualifying for 501 (c) 3 status and headed by president Dr. Abraham Robinson, is using space provided by the New Second Bethel Missionary Baptist Church. Distribution takes place the first Saturday of each month at the church located just off Hwy 488 behind Dunnellon Mulch & Stone. Their main fund raising event last year was the popular Harlem Legends Basketball Show at Dunnellon High School and LeBrun hopes to repeat it again this year.  

Left to right:

Volunteers Elaine Huett and Karen Keen, present check to Sue LeBrun, vice president of “Christian in Action”
Photo by Joann McCullough

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MAY 2014

DUNNELLON BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB RECEIVES $1200 FROM

DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP

 

Ladies from the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop presented a $1,200 check for a year’s scholarship for a girl and a boy to Te’Sha Jackson, Director of the Dunnellon Boys and Girls Club. The ladies arrived just before fifty-some enthusiastic children arrived by bus and were impressed as they watched the energetic opening routine led by the director and her staff. The Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop ladies have been supporters of the Boys and Girls Club for many years. 
 

Front row: Boys and Girls Club members Athen Parnowski, Nadia Rivera, Carlton Brown

Back row:  Te’Sha Jackson, Boys & Girls Club Director 2nd from left receiving check

Photo by Joann McCullough
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FEBRUARY 2014

DUNNELLON MIDDLE SCHOOL RECEIVES DONATION FROM

DUNNELLON COMMUNITY THRIFT SHOP

 

            Del Smallridge, principal of Dunnellon Middle School, received donation checks on behalf of the school February 7th from the women of the Dunnellon Community Thrift Shop.  Sue Plummer of the Thrift Shop Donation Committee learned of the school’s field trip plans beginning the next couple of weeks and was given a rundown of the cost which includes lunches, admissions, gas and drivers for buses.  Smallridge has made it a goal to take all the middle school classes to either the Silver River Museum with its special Knapp-In exhibition or to Silver Springs State Park this year.  The school also has a new Music Department Director with an almost non-existent budget.  The Thrift Shop ladies conducted a quick telephone vote, decided and presented a $499 check toward field trip and/or miscellaneous expenses and a $499 check to be given to the music department to be used at the Director’s discretion.  

Left to right:

Sue Plummer, Thrift Shop volunteer, Del Smallridge, Principal, Barbara Hayes, Thrift Shop treasurer.
Photo by Joann McCullough