Rotary Club’s Beach Blast raises $30,000 for charities

Photo by Evelyn Cairns

Co-chairs of the Trenton Rotary Club Winter Beach Blast, Rose Angela Gronda (left) and Laurie Scott Dixon of Grosse Ile, relax with President Tom Dickman of Trenton in a giant Adirondack chair at the Feb. 18 fundraiser. The chair was designed and built for the occasion by Rotarian Wes Mator. The annual event attracted approximately 550 guests and raised $30,000.

By Evelyn Cairns
Wearing sandals, shorts and sundresses — although the temperature outside was in the 30s — some 550 members of the Trenton Rotary Club and supporters descended upon Crystal Gardens Feb. 18 for the organization’s annual Winter Beach Blast.

The event, which raised approximately $30,000, with proceeds earmarked for the club’s charitable projects, featured a buffet dinner, an open bar, live and silent auctions, a $2,000 reverse raffle, costume and limbo contests, beach games, Hawaiian dancers and more.

Luxury vacation getaways to New York, Florida, Mexico and Hawaii were among the live-auction prizes.

Decorations included beach umbrellas and a mammoth Adirondack chair designed and constructed by Rotarian Wes Mator.

Laurie Scott Dixon and Rose Angela Gronda, co-chairs of the event, were assisted by committee members including Timber Baun-Crooks, Mike Concessi, Sia Dimpoulos, Val Dzagulones, Matt Hatty, Patra Herfi and Joe Hoshaw.

Others were Noel Jackson, Bill Jasman, Kathy Kane, Mike McCullough, Tim Montemayor Cathy Mozham, Alice Prusak, Ron Sheck, Kyle Stack, Rick Williams, Tom Dickman and Mator.

The Rotarians, led by President Dickman, are making plans for a new fundraiser, Mom Prom, to be held on April 28, and its annual Roar on the River in July.

500 attend Heart lunch
The ballroom of the MGM Grand hotel was a sea of red Feb. 17 when some 500 women donned the color to celebrate the American Heart Association’s ninth anniversary Go Red for Women luncheon, the culmination of a half-day program of health screenings, educational exhibits and a fundraising campaign that raised more than $500,000.

The highlight of the luncheon — heart healthy, of course — was a talk by Chris Powell of ABC’s “Extreme Makeover, Weight Loss Edition” a trainer and exercise specialist who rocketed to fame in 2003 for helping a “Good Morning Arizona” viewer lose 401 pounds in 26 months.

Powell’s solution to weight loss is “carb recycling” — alternating a high-carbohydrate diet one day, and a low-carbohydrate diet the next. His program also includes workouts and strength-training and cardio exercises.

The speaker, a certified strength and conditioning specialist with a degree in exercise science, believes that physical change begins with psychological change, because changing the mind can change the body.

“Start small and you can make that change a little bit at a time,” he says “You are the glue that holds it all together.”

Powell is the author of “Choose to Lose; the 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution.”

Coming up . . .
March 1 — Deadline for purchasing discounted tickets for the Downriver Youth Performing Arts Center’s Garden of Eden Gala fundraiser scheduled for June 9 at the Taylor Conservatory and Botanical Gardens; $85 ($100 after March 1); for tickets or more information, call Debbie Jackson at 734-671-2202.

March 3 — Healthy Downriver Family Expo; 9:30 a.m. to noon at the Holiday Inn, 17201 Northline, Southgate; no charge; the expo will feature 50-plus exhibits focusing on services and activities for children and families; blood-pressure checks, registration for free or low-cost local preschool programs; and sto-rytelling and music for kids; for more information, call 734-283-4400.

March 3 — Winter market; 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the Ikaros Hall, 1677 Fort St. at Arlington, Lincoln Park; a variety of farmers, specialty food venders and crafters will participate.

March 6 — Downriver Town Hall lecture by Nick Clooney; 11 a.m. at Crystal Gardens, 16703 Fort St., Southgate (doors open at 11 a.m.); Clooney is an award-winning former newsman, columnist, managing editor, anchor, managing editor, columnist; current host of “Moments That Changed Us” on AmericanLife TV, and father of actor George Clooney; a luncheon will follow the talk; for availability of lecture or lunch-eon tickets, call 834-783-9224.