140 year of Shriners

140 year of Shriners

Monday, June 29, 2009

Hamot Might "Save Our Shriners'"

Hamot Medical Center is in financial talks with the Shriners' Hospital of Erie.

Shriners' faces possible closure and will find out its fate at the Shriners' National Convention on July 6th through the 8th in Texas. Due to the poor economy, the hospital has been losing significant amounts of money.

However, TV12News has learned that Hamot wants to step in and help keep the hospital operating in the area.

Hamot Medical Center Chief Operating Officer Jim Fiorenzo writes in a statement, "Hamot and the Erie Shriners Hospital for Children have had a long-standing relationship. It is important that Shriners' has a future in this community and we want to help make that happen. We are in continuing negotiations with the Shriners and are encouraged by the conversations we have had with [Erie Shriners' Hospital Administrator] Chuck Walczak and his team."

Save Our Shriners' -- the grassroots group that raises money to keep the hospital open, say they heard the news this week at a banquet honoring the Shriners' Hospital.

"The only thing that really came from that was a comment by Jim Fiorenzo from Hamot, who said, 'We would never try to have Shriners' leave the area.' If, down the road, it came to that, I think they would do whatever we needed them to do to ensure that Shriners' would remain in Erie," Save Our Shriners Co-Founder Don Marinucci says.

Sources say that talks between the two hospitals came naturally, as Hamot owns the land where Shriners' is built. They also share some programming and medical staffing.

Lisa Weismann

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Shriners vital to Spokane

Special to The Spokesman-Review June 27, 2009 in Opinion
by Rich Hadley
“Finding out that your child has special needs is so overwhelming. It was such a comfort to know that we could get the best treatment available right here at home.” Those words, from my wife’s friend, Bambi Howe, of Spokane, echo what many other parents throughout the Inland Northwest are saying about Spokane’s Shriners Hospital for Children.

Howe’s first child had cerebral palsy symptoms. She said, “Shriners has provided care for him throughout the past 15 years, providing everything from splints to help him with walking, to casts to straighten his leg.”

This past spring, the family learned their daughter has a severe case of scoliosis. They headed back to Shriners Spokane, and next month she will get a brace to straighten her spine.

But now, the Howes and families throughout our region face the possibility Spokane’s Shriners will close.

Just like nearly everyone else during these tough economic times, Shriners Children’s Hospitals nationwide are hurting; the charity’s endowment has lost $3 billion. To stop the bleeding, Shriners’ governing body will vote in July whether to close Spokane Shriners and five other hospitals across the country.

Unlike other organizations and businesses, Shriners Hospital for Children has no steady income stream and accepts no payments. Our local Shriners operates on a $13.5 million budget solely from donations to treat an average 8,500 patients annually from Washington, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, Canada and Mexico. Where will these children get care if Shriners closes? Portland? It has 300-plus names on a waiting list for admission. Salt Lake City? That’s nearly 800 miles away; and with Shriners’ willingness to cover all transportation and housing expenses for patients and their families during their stay, it seems unlikely they’d begin to fly in patients from all across the Northwest.

More than half the procedures at Shriners Spokane are same-day surgeries. That eliminates the need for a lengthy hospital stay, and children can heal at home. At a time when health care reformers are clamoring for greater efficiencies, shouldn’t we applaud Shriners for their efforts instead of penalizing and handicapping them?

And, since many families are losing health insurance in this recession, an organization like Shriners is uniquely positioned to provide specialized care while children are treated in state-of-the-art facilities by pediatric orthopedic specialists, for free.

In addition, Shriners educates 30 medical and nursing students each year through pediatric internships. If Shriners closes, Spokane will lose a vital teaching center and an institution that’s been a part of the community since 1924.

Several generations of Howe’s family have gotten care at Shriners. Her mom had surgery for polio at age 13, which gave her the ability to walk.

Howe told me in an e-mail, “My mom would not have been able to receive treatment if Shriners were not here in Spokane. She was one of twelve children in a very poor family. Three of those twelve children had polio, and finances were simply not available.”

Our Shriners Hospital has treated 60,000 children over the past 85 years. It is a beacon of hope, help and healing. Bambi said it best: “It would be beyond tragic for our Shriners to close.”

This is a great community. It is time to stand up and pull together for Shriners.

You can help save Spokane’s Shriners Hospital for Children. Visit www.greaterspokane.org/ and click, “We Need Shriners.”

Rich Hadley is president and CEO of Greater Spokane Incorporated, a regional economic development group.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

KECI-TV 13 -Shriners

Check out this link for what they are saying in Montana.

Friday, June 26, 2009

This Little Klown is going to market

The Shriner’s Kader Klowns are planning to be at the July 12th Villebois Sunday Farmer’s Market beginning at 10am! Two clowns Bingo and Bullseye will be there making FREE balloon sculptures for children. They will also be giving each child a FREE coloring book and crayons from the Shriner’s Hospital for Children. Their BIG red sneaker will be there for donations for the hospital’s research fund for treating burned children -(The Sneaker Fund). There may also be a special guest appearance!!

For over 75 years, The Shriner's Hospital has treated more than 700,000 children with orthopedic problems, burns, spinal cord injuries, cleft lip and palate care, up to their 18th birthday. They are in a network of 22 hospitals providing expert medical care, absolutely free of charge. We are so fortunate to have one of the Shriner's Hospitals right here in the West Hills of Portland.

Come to Wilsonville's Sunday Market where you can eat breakfast and lunch, buy fresh produce from local farms, shop for homemade goods, listen to live music and make memories with your children and the Kader Klowns. Don't forget to bring your camera!

For more information on The Shriner's Hospital and the Al Kader Klowns, please visit www.alkadershriners.org. For more information on the Villebois Sunday Market please visit www.villeboissundaymarket.com.

Blog post contributed by Kristine Bresnahan

Thursday, June 25, 2009

One circus, one good time, Hermiston, Or.

By ROBERT DEANE The Hermiston Herald

Children and adults enjoyed beautiful weather and a fun show during Circus Gatti's visit Saturday to the Umatilla County Fairgrounds in Hermiston.

While numbers in total were down, 500 total for both shows (150 afternoon, 350, in the evening), it didn't stop parents and their children from enjoying the theatrics of the circus' arial acrobats, metal motorcycle riders, clowns, elephants and other activities for the annual Shriners presented event.

"It's fun," said Hope Cameron, 8 while watching the arial acrobats perform.

Adults even got in on the fun personally with Circus Gatti's Alejo the clown picking out volunteers like Hermiston resident Jose Garcia to both act like he was riding a motorcycle and jump rope while blind-folded.

"It was the best workout of my life," said Garcia.

Garcia said he brought his three-year-old daughter to the circus so she could ride the elephant.

"She was real excited and up at 6 a.m.," he said, adding she wanted to get ready for the 2 p.m. show right then.

For some families coming to the circus has become a family tradition.

"It's our third year in a row," said Bobbi Hughes whose two daughters Mystery, Lexus and their friends Jazzy Billman and Tierra Appling rode one of the circus elephants during intermission.

For Appling, it was the first time she'd been to a circus.

"We've had a lot of fun and I'd come back," she said.

For the Shriners, particularly the Desert Shrine Club of Hermiston who has sponsored the circus for 45 years, the fun children have is what the event is about.

"I think it's the world's greatest philanthropy and serves a good cause," said Dick Crist, Desert Shrine club member.

The money, he added, goes to the Shriners' Children's Hospital in Portland where children are admitted and treated without charge.

Desert Shrine Club president Reese Burkenbine was happy to see the turnout the circus received Saturday that raised $2,000 for the Shriners.

"Considering the economy we did pretty good and we'll bring them back next year," he said.

Shriners Hospital for Children: A proud tradition

Contributed by: Allen Duey published on the Hub by the Denver Newspaper Assoc.

Parades, conventions, comraderie... the Shriners have a lot of proud traditions... but none they're prouder of than the Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Shriners Hospitals for Children is a one-of-a-kind international health care system of hospitals dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing pediatric specialty care, innovative research and outstanding teaching programs. Over the past 86 years, Shriners Hospitals for Children has provided the best, most advanced medical care, at absolutely no charge, to more than 865,000 children. Children up to age 18 with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate are eligible for care and receive all care in a family-centered environment at no charge - regardless of financial need. Acceptance is based solely on a child's medical needs. For patients at Shriners Hospitals for Children, ability to pay or insurance coverage is never an issue. There is no charge for any care or services provided within Shriners Hospitals for Children facilities.

The Shriners Hospitals specializing in orthopaedics are dedicated to providing medical and rehabilitative services to children with congenital deformities, problems resulting from orthopaedic injuries, and diseases of the musculoskeletal system. Some of the most commonly treated conditions include clubfoot, limb deficiencies and discrepancies, scoliosis, osteogenesis imperfecta, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, and orthopedic problems related to spina bifida.

FUNDING: As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Shriners Hospitals for Children relies on the generous donations of Shriners and the general public to carry out our mission and change the lives of children every day. For more information about supporting Shriners Hospitals, please visit www.shrinershospitals.org or call (800) 241-GIFT.

LOCALLY, El Jebel Shriners volunteers provide support services for Shriners Hospital patients in our jurisdiction. Locally, we provide logistical and clerical services for Screening Clinics, Outreach Clinics, and Telemedicine Clinics, on behalf of Shriners Hospitals. El Jebel Shriners also provide support in terms of travel to Shriners Hospitals, by booking airfare for the patient and one parent/guardian, or by providing a nominal sum to those who wish to travel by car. Currently, there are nearly 1000 children in our jurisdiction (northern Colorado) who are receiving continuing care through Shriners Hospitals.

Do you know of a child that Shriners Hospitals might be able to help? If so, please call the El Jebel Shriners office in Denver at (303) 455-3470.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

9 Mexican burn victims now at Calif. Shriners Hospital for Children

The Associated Press

SACRAMENTO—Nine children burned at a day care center in Mexico are now being treated at a pediatric burn center in Sacramento.

A Shriners Hospital for Children Northern California spokeswoman says five of the children are in critical condition and four are in fair condition. Catherine Curran says the three girls and six boys have burns covering 17 to 80 percent of their bodies.

She said seven other children injured in the June 5 fire will be treated at a Shriners clinic in Hermosillo, Mexico. Sacramento doctors flew to the nothern Mexican city a week after the fire to examine the children.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

a Vote for Sanjaya on the NBC Show is a $ for Shriners Hospital for Children

Turn on the NBC show, "I am a Celebrity, Get me out of Here" this week and get your VOTE in for Sanjaya!
Below is the link to the show to Vote or if you want to watch it on your computer.

Not everyone on the show likes his singing but Sanjaya is playing the game well.
He is the most positive celebrity on the show (and things are getting rough)so lets give him our support him. This exposure to Shriners Hospitals may help another child.

Sanjaya helped out the El Zagal Shrine Circus when they lost half of their acts because of the Fargo, ND floods. His performance bought a lot media coverage and over 28,000 people came to the circus.
After seeing what the Shriners did during the floods and their excitement about the Shriners Hospitals for Children, he choose SHC as his charity for this show.

If you have keep with the news, you know that Shriners Hospitals for Children needs money to keep going. There have been several fund raisers around the country by Shriners and Shriner Kids and friends and we thank them all.


Friday, June 19, 2009

JT/Shriners Opren Seeking Volunteers for 2009

The Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open is seeking volunteers for its 2009 tournament Monday, Oct. 12- Sunday, Oct. 18 at TPC Summerlin.
Tournament volunteers can assist in a variety of areas throughout the tournament including admissions and greeting, caddie services, transportation services and more.

The volunteer package is $40 and includes a tournament jacket, golf shirt and hat, week-long badge, a ticket to the volunteer party and meals during the volunteer shift. Volunteers must be 18 or older.
To register, visit the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open volunteer Web site or contact Donna Millwood at 702.589.4945.

Exotic car show 'La Dolce Vita' at Black Horse during Monterey Car Week to support Shriners Hospital

Kae Davis, Exotic Car Examiner
La Dolce Vita 2009 Friday August 14, 2009 in Monterey Bay, CA supports Shriners Hospital

The La Dolce Vita Automobili event will offer beautiful Italian and other European collector cars on display August 14, 2009 during the famous Monterey Car Week and has been attracting Exhibitors, Sponsors and Spectators from around the world. La Dolce Vita will be showcasing the exotic cars Concours D'Elegance style (on the green fairways of the luxury Black Horse Golf and Country Club opulent grounds) not only for the thrill of sharing a passion for motorsports and engineering with a crowd. The special event hopes to bring much needed funds to residents of the Northern California Pacific area community, with proceeds being raised not only to fund a "La Dolce Vita Scholarship Fund" for hopeful automotive engineering and design students but also to donate back to a most worthy cause: the children in residence at the Shriner's Hospital. “Charitable gifts allow us to extend the gift of free care to all children with acute burns, spinal cord injuries, scars from any cause, club feet, cerebral palsy, scoliosis, absence of limbs and many other orthopedic conditions”, explains Director of Development Aland Anderson. As the Italianizzato Club works hard to support local non-profit organization and a variety of children's charities, we are all the more proud to help organize an August East Coast - West Coast car lover meetup at this branch of the Monterey Car Week auto show events.

06.18.2009 – AUBURN, WASHINGTON. La Dolce Vita Automobili at Black Horse will be contributing a portion of each spectator ticket purchased to Shriners Hospitals for Children Northern California (SHCNC). “We are very grateful that La Dolce Vita Automobili is a member of our team, joining the host of physicians, surgeons, nurses, researchers and other pediatric specialists who are transforming the lives of children on a daily basis”, says Director of Development Alan Anderson. The system of Shriners Hospitals for Children is a North American healthcare and research organization with hospitals located throughout the United States; in Mexico City, Mexico and in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Shriners Hospitals for Children Northern California (SHCNC) is the regional burn center for western North America servicing 13 western states plus western Mexico and Canada.
Shriners Hospitals for Children to Benefit from La Dolce Vita Automobili at Black Horse
“Everything Shriners Hospitals for Children does is dependent upon philanthropy and we want to help as much as possible. We’re looking forward to a long term relationship that lasts for years and to contributing to their wonderful efforts through our passion for cars”, shares event Co Founder Kerry McMullen. The La Dolce Vita Automobili event will offer beautiful Italian and other European collector cars on display August 14, 2009 during the famous Monterey Car Week and has been attracting Exhibitors, Sponsors and Spectators from around the world. “Charitable gifts allow us to extend the gift of free care to all children with acute burns, spinal cord injuries, scars from any cause, club feet, cerebral palsy, scoliosis, absence of limbs and many other orthopedic conditions”, explains Anderson. “Events, such as the La Dolce Vita Automobili, play an important role in benefiting public awareness of our unique mission in specialized pediatric healthcare and research. Without question, someone will attend La Dolce Vita Automobili, learn about Shriners Hospitals for Children and be able to help the child of a family member, a friend, a colleague or a neighbor. The higher our visibility, the greater our chances are of using our expertise to save a life or change a life”.

Event Co Founder Jerry Kaye shares, “Our team was amazed to learn how deep the car passion runs through this group and we are thrilled to share a common passion with them can only strengthen our combined efforts”. There are a number of car clubs within the Shriners fraternity that represent the personal hobby interests of the members. Each car club draws from the larger Shrine membership in their region and their activities provide the clubs with opportunities for fun, fellowship and service. Many of these club members also volunteer as drivers for patients in the Shrine transportation program and almost every member is active in fundraising for the hospital. “A number of our members have volunteered to assist the car show and are very excited”, says Anderson. Volunteers will lend a hand with event set-up, event book and gift bag distribution, VIP hospitality tents, parking and more.
Kae Davis is a pop culture historian, transportation reporter, and freelance journalist. Since 2005, Kae Davis has focused on promoting auto enthusiasm with and for Lamborghini, Maserati, and Ferrari clients in the Mid-Atlantic region, and has over 20 years experience working with luxury products and specialty service providers. She is the founder of the Italianizzato Club, a VIP social networking group on Facebook, and works closely with her husband Jack and son Drew (who are also involved in the high line auto industry). For more information about how to submit a free press release, exotic spotter photos, historical auto memorabilia news, or to schedule an appointment for media service coverage for your dealership or organization, email the Exotic Car Examiner at cafecars@gmail.com.

Research Focuses On Drug Therapy for Hypophosphatasia

June 18, 2009, St.Louis,Mo.

A new experimental targeted enzyme replacement therapy strengthens the bones of infants with a severe, sometimes deadly, genetic bone disorder known as hypophosphatasia (HPP), according to early clinical data presented by Michael P. Whyte, M.D., medical/scientific director of the center for metabolic bone disease and molecular research at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis.

Dr. Whyte presented the results of a Phase I safety trial of the experimental treatment – currently known as ENB-0040 –- in adults, and early safety and efficacy findings from an ongoing study in severely affected infants at The Endocrine Society's 91st annual meeting on June 11 in Washington, D.C.

The studies which led to this finding were done in collaboration with and funding by Enobia Pharma of Montreal. Dr. Whyte’s abstract on the research was chosen as one of the 20 most promising scientific advances in endocrinology for the coming year. In addition to the presentation earlier this month, it is scheduled to be featured in a special booklet that is being prepared by The Endocrine Society.

"There is an urgent need for an effective treatment for these infants whose bones are so brittle that their rib cages often break just from breathing; about half of the babies with the severe infantile form of hypophosphatasia will die before their first birthday," Dr. Whyte said. "Without any approved treatments, we currently can only try to manage symptoms of hypophosphatasia without addressing the underlying problem - a profound lack of bone mineralization. This is the first time we've seen a drug therapy positively impact bone formation in these severely sick infant patients."

Patients with HPP lack an enzyme called tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase (TNSALP) that plays a key role in bone formation. ENB-0040 is an enzyme replacement therapy designed to specifically target TNSALP to the bones, with the goal of "normalizing" bone mineralization.

Additional Phase II clinical trials are planned for children and adults with HPP during 2009.

In addition to his position at Shriners Hospitals for Children, Dr. Whyte is a professor of medicine, pediatrics and genetics in the division of bone and mineral diseases at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from New York University and a medical degree from Downstate College of Medicine, State University of New York.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Play Ball for Shriners

Exciting fundraising event for Shriners Hospitals for Children - St. Louis on July 1, which will basically kick-off the MLB All-Star game festivities in St. Louis. I know it's right before everyone leaves for Imperial Session, but if you're in St. Louis, and can make the time, we'd love to have you there that evening! If you think you might be coming, drop me a line!

Be sure to share this with as many people as you can, Shrine and non-Shrine!

For more information about the event, you can also go to www.playball2009.com or www.playball2009.com/stLouCalendar.html

Tammy M. Robbins,Director of Public and Community Relations Shriners Hospitals for Children - St. Louis

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Shriners Summer Solstice 8k & 5k

Jun 20 , 2009 - 8:00 am

The Shriners and Fleet Feet Sports invite you to join us for the Shriners Summer Solstice 8k & 5k. What used to be known as the Shriners Fun Run will now be a celebration of Summer with on-course performers and a post-race Solstice Festival.

New 2009 Highlights:

* Free Kids Runs
* Brooks Technical Fiber Shirts
* On-course Solstice Performers
* Post-race Solstice Festival

Visit shriners.fleetfeetsacramento.com for details > >

Friday, June 12, 2009

Every Little Bid Helps! Give to Shriners Hospitals for Children Every Time You Buy or Sell on eBay

You can now support Shriners Hospitals for Children when you buy or sell on eBay through the eBay Giving Works program.

Plus, in the month of June, each purchase you make of an eBay Giving Works item automatically enters you to win one of five $1,000 eBay shopping sprees!

You can support Shriners Hospitals for Children when you sell on eBay. Did you know that charity listings often get more bids and higher prices than regular eBay listings? Boost your sales and support the critical work performed by our hospitals by designating our organization to receive 10-100 percent of your final sale price the next time you list something great. Plus, eBay gives back to you too, with a fee credit on your basic selling fees.

Since we are just getting started on eBay, our greatest need is for items to be listed with Shriners Hospitals for Children as the beneficiary. So, clean out that garage or closet and start selling!

You can find whatever you're looking for on eBay from baseball cards to new cars and more. When you do, shop for items that benefit Shriners Hospitals for Children. You can get a great deal and help the kids at the same time!

Shop now to support Shriners Hospitals for Children

Ralph W. Semb-Updates on Mexico Fire


Our system must be very proud of the time and effort of our Staff. This has been extremely difficult for them when such a disaster of this magnitude strikes. To lay aside their normally schedule of surgeries, and in some cases, reschedule surgeries in Boston for example, to make available more beds for the extremely ill children has to be recognized by all of us as members of such a great Fraternity. I ask you, should the occasion arise, to thank them and or even send a card showing your appreciation for what they are attempting to do to help these children I am sure would be appreciated.

There was excellent collaboration by the medical teams from the NCH and LA hospitals on the ground for triage purposes in Hermosillo.

Status as of 6/11/09 Reviewed with Disaster Response Coordinator, Dr. Tina Palmieri: (more certain but still evolving)

Hermosillo - the Burn Team reviewed children still hospitalized - 1 serious upper extremity burn triaged to Northern California by commercial travel.

No new referrals for critical inpatient care are necessary. Follow-up appointments scheduled in outreach clinics for a small number of patients.

(While in Hermosillo, the Northern California team was contacted by the Governor of Sonora and asked to evaluate the remaining 10 disaster related inpatients in Guadalajara, and 3 in Obregon. He offered his private plane for the team travel to both cities.)

Guadalajara - 4 critical intubated patients were identified for transport - 2 triaged by Dr. Palmieri to Cincinnati and 2 triaged to Boston. (Transport of 1 intubated, child to Cincinnati is planned for later tonight or tomorrow. Transport of other children is in a holding pattern for now.)

1 major burn, non-critical, has been triaged to Northern California.

Obregon - 1 major burn, non-critical, has been identified and triaged to Northern California.

The proactive effort to ascertain remaining demand for critical and serious burn care has been extremely useful. Dr. Palmieri is satisfied that she is now fully informed of the potential needs.

6/11/09 Total Triage Status Summary:

Northern California: 4 Critical, intubated

2 Major Burn, non-critical

l Serious Upper Extremity

7 Ambulatory, Outreach Clinic Appts.

Cincinnati: 2 Critical, Intubated

Boston: 2 Critical, Intubated

Los Angeles: Outreach Clinic and Telemedicine Appts.

From the LA Shrine Hospital team in Mexico:

The tragedy in Hermosillo that occurred in a Day Care facility last Friday, June 5, 2009 involved well over 100 infants and toddlers. To date 44 children have died and a multitude has serious, life threatening burns and inhalation injuries. As with any disaster, the various branches of government are involved in handling this tragedy, with communication being key to a successful outcome. Noble Alberto Barrera Robinson, President of the local Shrine has been remarkably effective at bringing focus to leadership at both regional and national levels to areas of need. Both Shrine hospitals in California responded immediately to his request for assistance, each bringing their specialized capabilities to Sonora, Mexico to provide needed assistance to the community. While physicians were in frequent meetings with the local & regional leadership to facilitate providing supportive care, Social work instantly able to engage the healthcare workers – nurses, doctors, paramedics, emergency room personnel - providing much needed guidance. The original schedule of hourly sessions was doubled based upon requests for assistance from other facilities, and then doubled again.

The Shrine teams collaborated and strategized to provide optimal coverage of the far reaching needs. The Hermosillo hospital system was rapidly over whelmed with a need for specialized care of this unique pediatric population and families. A team of pediatric intensivists from Mexico City arrived and provided much needed relief. Triage networks were established and gravely ill patients – if transportable – went to larger centers in Obregon and Guadalajara. Simultaneously, the local Shriners were able to communicate with the Shrine Burn Centers and Dr Tina Palmieri was responsible for the triage of the patients with large burn and inhalation injuries. The Shrine team traveled to each local hospital reviewing patients, charts and meeting with physicians, families and administrators. Once all inpatients were evaluated, the team reported findings back to Dr Palmieri and recommended a second phase that required two task forces – one to travel to the other cities to assess the critically ill patients and the second to continue to work with local agencies and the Shrine Center to establish an Outpatient Outreach. With the tremendous assistance of the local Shrine center a Shrine clinic was conducted in collaboration with the Hospital Infantil, to address the needs of burn victims and families that are not inpatients. Again collaboration and communication was key to the success, including assistance of the Governor providing his aircraft to transport the Shrine team as rapidly as possible to each site for evaluation.

Once the two task forces have completed the second phase of evaluation and care, they will provide a debriefing to Dr Palmieri for final phase prior to leaving. Follow-up care is planned via Telemedicine during the next few weeks, followed by Outreach clinics in July be the Los Angeles unit and September by the Northern California unit. It is a rare circumstance where more than one Shrine team is called upon to provide support in a disaster. Impressive is the continued collaboration among the Shrine team members, each bringing a unique area of specialty that is thoroughly appreciated by the community, highlighting the value of the Shriners de Sonora, IAP.

As always, I remain your servant,

Ralph W. Semb, President and Chief Executive Officer, Shriners Hospitals for Children

Experimental Drug Strengthens Bones in Infants With Severe Hypophosphatasia

For more Information go to Globe News wire www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/news.html?d=167102
Shriners Hospitals for Children's Dr. Michael Whyte Presents First
Efficacy and Safety Results of Targeted Enzyme Replacement Therapy
in Patients With Rare Genetic Bone Disease

Data Presented at The Endocrine Society 2009 Meeting
in Washington, D.C.

ST. LOUIS, June 11, 2009 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A new experimental targeted enzyme replacement therapy strengthens the bones of infants with a severe, sometimes deadly, genetic bone disorder known as hypophosphatasia (HPP), according to early clinical data presented by Michael P. Whyte, M.D., medical/scientific director of the center for metabolic bone disease and molecular research at Shriners Hospitals for Children - St. Louis.

"There is an urgent need for an effective treatment for these infants whose bones are so brittle that their rib cages often break just from breathing; about half of the babies with the severe infantile form of hypophosphatasia will die before their first birthday," Dr. Whyte said. "Without any approved treatments, we currently can only try to manage symptoms of hypophosphatasia without addressing the underlying problem - a profound lack of bone mineralization. This is the first time we've seen a drug therapy positively impact bone formation in these severely sick infant patients."

Dr. Whyte presented the results of a Phase I safety trial of the experimental treatment - currently known as ENB-0040 - in adults, and early safety and efficacy findings from an ongoing study in severely affected infants at The Endocrine Society's 91st Annual Meeting (the ENDO 09 Conference) today in Washington, D.C. There were no drug-related serious adverse events reported in either study, nor did any of the patients develop anti-ENB-0040 antibodies.

Patients with HPP lack an enzyme called tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase (TNSALP) that plays a key role in bone formation. ENB-0040 is an enzyme replacement therapy designed to specifically target TNSALP to the bones, with the goal of "normalizing" bone mineralization.

In the infant trial, all patients had undermineralized "soft" and deformed bones (rickets) when they entered the study. After an initial single intravenous dose, the patients received thrice-weekly subcutaneous doses of ENB-0040 for up to six months.

So far, X-rays at three months showed substantial new mineralization in the ribs, wrists, knees and long bones in the first three of five patients. The patients' overall clinical status improved as well, with most showing improved growth and requiring less respiratory support over the course of treatment.

Enobia Pharma, the Montreal, Canada-based company developing ENB-0040, sponsored both studies.

Additional Phase II clinical trials are planned for children and adults with HPP during 2009 (www.clinicaltrials.gov).

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Im a Celebrity!

I never though I would vote for Sanjaya But he is playing the game well and he is playing for Shriners Hospital for Children.
Take a look at the NBC show, "I am a Celebrity, Get me out of Here" this week and get your vote in for Sanjaya! here is the link to the show if you want to watch it on your computer or vote.


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Update on the Tragedy in Mexico

I wanted to give each of you an update on the terrible fire in Mexico. First of all, this fire was in the northwestern part of Mexico, the area that the Northern California Hospital would cover. They were immediately notified of this fire and the possibility of a large number of children that may be involved. The staff at the Northern California Hospital, under the direction of Dr. Tina Palmeri, the Assistant Chief of Staff and the Administrator Maggie Bryan, immediately notified Dr. Peter Armstrong and myself, letting us know what had happened and that they would triage this tragedy. They immediately notified the other hospitals, Cincinnati and Boston to see what was available for beds. Boston was full and Cincinnati did have available beds. NCH had beds available. The children, several of whom at this time had expired mostly to smoke inhalation.

What everyone needs to understand up front, before any transport of a critically burnt child, the child must be stabilized before they can be transported. Then a determination must be made as to the chances of survival of the child. Please understand, these are the times that we gave the doctors the OK to transport regardless of cost to help speed up the care. We also have to consider the acuteness and if the patient could in fact survive the transportation. Presently, The Military has transported to Sacramento. We are still waiting the local Doctors to release other children.

Our LA hospital has also been asked to assist in helping those with not so severe burns and they are in fact helping. Looks like all we could take care of have been helped. My thanks for extra time that the staff has put in to help this disaster in Mexico.

Ralph W. Semb, President and Chief Executive Officer, Shriners Hospitals for Children

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Shriners Hospitals for Children is offering an exciting advertising opportunity.

Companies may purchase space for display of their logo on the sides of a semi-trailer, along with the Shriners Hospitals for Children logo. Unlike stationary billboards, which can only been seen from one spot, these “rolling billboards” travel from coast to coast, through urban and rural areas, reaching millions of viewers nationwide.

The cost of the advertising space is $3,995 for approximately six years, typically the length of time that semi-trailers are in service on the road. The annual cost of this inexpensive opportunity is about $665 a year, or approximately $56 a month for six years. This inexpensive advertising opportunity is a tremendous value, and also helps to increase public awareness of Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Sparhawk Trucking, Inc. and ProSticker.com, two companies in Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., teamed up to make this unique advertising opportunity available. Sparhawk Trucking has donated space on the sides of their semi-trailers to help promote Shriners Hospitals for Children. ProSticker.com has donated the time and talent to create and print vinyl artwork to be displayed on the semi-trailers, creating the “rolling billboards” that help to raise awareness for Shriners Hospitals for Children, as well as the sponsoring companies.

“This is one of the most unique and inexpensive opportunities for businesses to show support of our well-known charitable organization and gain exposure for their own business at the same time,” said Director of Corporate Sponsorships and Giving for Shriners Hospitals for Children, Wayne M. Witczak.

The fundraising opportunity was originally promoted through Zor Shriners, the local Shriners chapter in Wisconsin, and was a huge success. With the help of Zor Shriners member Terry McShane, the fundraiser was expanded to a national program. Owners of Sparhawk Trucking Mark and Tom Sparhawk and owner of ProSticker.com Steve Livernash were eager to help.

For more information about this exciting opportunity, please contact:

Wayne M. Witczak
Director of Corporate Sponsorships and Giving
Shriners Hospitals for Children
2900 Rocky Point Dr.
Tampa, FL 33607
(813) 281-8177

June 15 is Ride to work Day!


150,000 motorcycles use 30,000 gallons per normal commuting day x 2 (an estimated 150,000 added motorcycles on Ride to Work Day) = 60,000 gallons used by motorcycles on Ride to Work Day. 60,000 gallons used on Ride to Work Day - 30,000 gallons used by motorcycles on a normal commuting day = 30,000 additional gallons used by motorcycles on Ride to Work Day.

On Ride to Work Day, there are an estimated 150,000 additional Ride to Work Day commuting motorcycles and 150,000 less commuting car, light truck and SUV’s. A 6 mile (avg) commute x 2 (both ways) x 150,000 commuting car, light truck and SUV’s = 1,800,000 car, light truck and SUV miles. 1,800,000 car, light truck and SUV miles / 20 mpg (avg) = 90,000 gallons. 90,000 less car, truck and SUV gallons - 30,000 more gallons used on Ride to Work Day = 60,000 less gallons of fuel used on Ride to Work Day. If every work day were Ride to Work Day, 60,000 gallons saved x 250 work days = 15,000,000 less gallons used per year.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Drivers Wanted for Shrine

The Shrine Traveling Display(pictured at top of this Blog)that is stationed on the West Coast. Has been requested by the Shriners Hospital for Children-Los Angeles for their Rhythem on the Vine Concert the weekend of June 27th and they don't have anyone that can drive it for them that week.

The unit is a Ford 250 Dual and the Display Trailer is 28'long with A/C, lights, TV, DVD player all run by a big generator in the back of the truck.

The insurance co. requires a Com. Drivers license for the unit to travel from event to event and some Shrine units don't have a member that has such a license so I am starting a list of Qualified drivers. Please let me know if you have a Commercial Drivers License and some spare time.

The Shrine unit that requests to use the trailer will be responsible for the expanses of getting the unit to them (gas, etc.)and if they use one of you they are responsible for food and lodging(if required) and of course getting you home.

While I am looking for driver I would like to remind you that all of our hospital's can use more drivers so if you have a day or part of a day call the hospital and get on their drivers list.

Louis Gross,IPRC,Director region2

Clock ticking for Shriners Hospital in Shreveport

Kathleen Sherwood, a physical therapy aide, works with Gage, 8, from Ecru, Miss., during his physical therapy recently at the Shriner's Hospital in Shreveport. (Jim Hudelson/The Times)

By Melody Brumble • mbrumble@gannett.com • June 8, 2009

National Shriners officials this week will review reports about the feasibility of LSU Health Sciences Center keeping Shriners Hospital in Shreveport open.

The children's hospital is among six national officials may close as a cost-cutting measure. However, Ralph Semb, chairman of the national hospital board of trustees, confirmed Sunday that LSUHSC-Shreveport officials have been in talks with members of the local hospital board.

LSUHSC-S officials haven't commented on whether there are negotiations to keep Shriners Hospital open.

Some 1,200 Shriners will vote on proposals related to the hospitals during the organization's annual meeting July 6-8 in San Antonio. The national trustees in March agreed to put closing hospitals to a vote because of a mounting budget shortfall.

"I think what's going to happen at this point in time is there will be a presentation or resolution to allow us to continue talks between all of those hospitals on the closure list with the hospitals near them," Semb said.

The Shreveport Shriners Hospital, the first in the organization's 22-campus system, opened in 1922. It provides specialized orthopedic care for conditions ranging from scoliosis to cerebral palsy.

Troy Bramlitt, whose grandson recently underwent surgery at Shriners in Shreveport, wonders where families will turn if the hospital closes its doors.

Bramlitt, of Ecru, Miss., spent nearly a month at the hospital while his grandson, Gage, underwent physical therapy after surgery to straighten his feet and legs. Gage was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a baby.

Doctors used bone from Gage's hips to straighten his feet. They realigned his thigh and leg muscles so he stand tall and walk without the help of a walker someday.

"I'm working hard," Gage, 8, said of his therapy. "I'll keep doing it after I go home."

"It's been a blessing to come here," Bramlitt said as Gage worked to strengthen his legs. "I've learned a lot. It's been good for me, too."

Doctors used bone from Gage's hips to straighten his feet. They realigned his thigh and leg muscles so he stand tall and walk without the help of a walker someday.

"I'm working hard," Gage, 8, said of his therapy. "I'll keep doing it after I go home."

Care for Gage and others is free. The Shriners organization depends on an endowment to generate money for the hospital system's $850 million-a-year budget. However, the endowment plummeted as the stock market fell, meaning it generated less income.

Local Shriner John Knox hopes a rebound in the stock market will improve the endowment's bottom line and help convince the national trustees to keep the Shreveport hospital open.

"There's been a lot of talk about doing things to keep it from being shut," Knox said. "I think they're even going to try to get Gov. (Bobby) Jindal to go to the meeting in July."

Shriners Hospital readies for two more victims of Mexican daycare fire

By Gina Kim gkim@sacbee.com

Two more children badly burned in the Mexican daycare center fire were expected to arrive late today in Sacramento for treatment, while the two already hospitalized here remain in critical condition.

A girl and boy - both 2 years old - will join the pair of 3-year-olds at Shriners Hospitals for Children Northern California, which handles many of Mexico's major burns among children, said Dr. David Greenhalgh, chief of burns at the hospital.

"They're usually horrible injuries," Greenhalgh said.

The new patients are suffering from burns over 25 to 40 percent of their bodies, not as extensive as the 3-year-olds who were admitted Saturday.

The 3-year-old girl, who arrived Saturday afternoon, suffers from burns over 80 percent of her body. She underwent surgery to relieve swelling pressure on her airway and stomach that day and will undergo a grafting operation Monday, Greenhalgh said.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Shriners gather in Billings

Shriners from all over the Pacific Northwest were in Billings on Saturday to entertain a crowd of youngsters.

About 700 Shriners from 18 temples participated in a parade through downtown Billings as Shriners from Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, Alaska and Canada traveled to the Magic City for the Pacific Northwest Shrine Association conference.

This weekend was a rare opportunity to see the parade since the conference comes to Billings only every 10 years.

The group supports 22 Shriner's children's burn and orthopedic hospitals across North America.

For the first time in nearly a decade Shriners from all over the Pacific Northwest are competing in Billings.

From buggies to music to painted faces the Pacific Northwest Shrine Association is hosting its annual competition this year in Billings.

"It's a good turnout, it's better than the last couple years. The economy's not the best but still they come to Billings, Montana to have fun," says Al Bedoo Shriner and Director General of the event Dick Paul.

Along with having fun, there's a goal in mind.

"So we can make more awareness that we do help kids and that's what Shriners function is. To help children have fun, help children defy the odds," says Al Bedoo Shriner and PNSA President Larry Tipton.

The Shrine Auditorium is jam-packed with Shriners from 18 different temples across the Northwest. Inlcuding: Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, Alaska and Canada.

"The last time we had the PNSA in Billings was 2001 and the first one we had was probably back in, I think the 1920s or 1930s," says Tipton.

And there's a legend among the Shriners who dates back even longer and has been clowning around for most of his life.

"Anything would happen in school, well the teacher would always say, 'Floyd! Behave yourself!' So I guess I could say I've been a clown all my life," says Shrine Clown Floyd Creekmore, also known as "Creeky."

The 92 year old clown learned at a young age the ins and outs of what it takes to be a clown.

"Well, they say that a professional is somebody that gets paid. Well my dad gave me a nickel once to shut up. And so I guess I'm a professional," says Creeky

Creeky has been a Shrine Clown for nearly 30 years and before that he was an independent one. And as for calling it quits, he says he's thought about it.

"I keep thinking about retiring but what the heck! I'll keep going until I have to quit," says the clown.

But Creeky admits growing older as a clown can have its obstacles.

"I don't expect to win today because I have too many wrinkles. It takes too much make-up to fill all my wrinkles. But I will keep it up as long as I can," admits Creeky.

And the legendary clown will continue to fill those wrinkles as long as children reap the benefits in the end.

Since 1922, Shriners Hospitals for Children have improved the lives of more than 865,000 children.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Mexico fire victims headed for Sacramento

By Bob Davila bdavila@sacbee.com
Saturday, Jun. 6, 2009 - 12:22 pm

Sacramento's Shriners Hospital for Children Northern California is prepared to accept and treat child burn victims from a deadly fire on Friday at a day care center in Hermosillo, in the northern Mexican state of Sonora, hospital officials said. At least one injured child is now known to be headed for Sacramento, a 3-year-old girl with burns over 80 percent of her body.

Flames engulfed a day care center in Hermosillo, killing at least 35 children and injuring dozens as neighbors and teachers ran through thick, black smoke to pull preschoolers from the blaze, officials said.

Other injured children are still receiving emergency attention in Mexico, and doctors there are consulting with Shriners' physicians to determine who needs advanced care available here, Shriners officials said Saturday.

"We're working with medical personnel in Mexico to ensure that children who need it get emergency care," said Catherine Curran, Shriners spokeswoman.

Mexico's consul general in Sacramento said he will contact the family of the one California-bound child to offer further assistance.

"We are very grateful to the Shriners for providing this type of service to Mexican patients," Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez said.

Some children will be brought to Sacramento and others will be sent to Shriners' Cincinnati Hospital, Curran said.

The fire may have started at a tire and car warehouse Friday afternoon and spread to the neighboring ABC day care center in Hermosillo, said Jose Larrinaga, a spokesman for Sonora state investigators. But Larrinaga added that the cause of the fire and exactly where it started were still under investigation.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Retiree gives Shriners Hospitals in Portland $1 million

by John Foyston, The Oregonian Thursday June 04, 2009,
Torsten Kjellstrand/The OregonianGeorge Ruhberg, 93, who has been a volunteer at Shriners Hospital for Children in Portland since 1994, had included a bequest for it in his will. But the retired Marine Corps officer and utility accountant decided to act while alive.

George Ruhberg had no problem writing "one million dollars" on one of his recent checks. After all, he said, that is shorter than a more quotidian sum such as "six hundred and ninety-seven dollars and 67 cents."

"But getting 'Shriners Hospitals for Children, Portland' in that line they give you to write on a check," he said, "that took some doing. I had to practice that a few times."

It wasn't the first big donation the retired Marine Corps chief warrant officer and former corporate accountant has made. A stack of certificates in his apartment in a Garden Home retirement community includes a plaque from the Oregon Scottish Rite clinics recognizing contributions of $100,000 or more, and a Department of Veteran Affairs certificate lauds his 3,269 hours of volunteer service to veterans over 12 years.

In fact, Ruhberg said, he has given the Scottish Rite clinics $220,000 over the years and an additional $52,000 to DeMolay, the Masonic-sponsored youth organization. "Oh, and I also bought a $62,000 organ for my church, Beaverton Methodist."

But the million-dollar check to Shriners was the biggest.

Torsten Kjellstrand/The OregonianWriting a $1 million check wasn't hard for George Ruhberg, who saved and invested during his military and corporate careers. But fitting the recipient, Shriners Hospital for Children, on one line was not so easy.

"We knew that George had made a provision in his will," said Shriners Hospital spokeswoman Kay Weber-Ekeya, "so we were thrilled at his gift, which will become part of our capital campaign for the new addition to the building."
Portland a bright spot

The Portland campaign is a bright spot in an otherwise grim outlook for the Shriners nationwide. Officials said in April that the organization is siphoning $1 million a day from its endowment to balance the budget for 22 hospitals in North America and that up to a quarter of them may be closed.

Weber-Ekeya said Portland's 66,000-square-foot, $74 million addition is scheduled to open in a year and will provide four operating theaters (though there is money to outfit only three initially) and a new orthotics and prosthetics department. It also will allow the hospital to make all rooms private or semi-private.

Hospital officials have offered Ruhberg the honor of having his name on the new entry plaza or one of the operating suites, and the hospital board will give him the Dream Makers Legacy Award at its June 22 meeting, Weber-Ekeya said.

"George has been a volunteer at the hospital since 1994," she said, "and he still leads tours -- talk about the millionaire next door, he's really the sweetest man."

When Ruhberg told the hospital a couple of months ago that he had decided to give the money before he died instead of leaving it in his will, development director Mark Thoreson told him to have his broker contact Shriners headquarters in Tampa, Fla., to arrange a funds transfer.

"But he said, 'Hold on, I want to write a check,'" Thoreson said. "And I totally understand that: I wanted to make the transfer safe and he wanted the thrill of writing that check."
Memorial Day gift

Thoreson, hospital officials and Shriners formally accepted the check on Memorial Day in the community room at Ruhberg's retirement community, in front of Ruhberg's fellow residents.

That check was the result of a lifetime of service and thrift that now seem sadly obsolete.

"Aren't you going to ask me about how I got the money?" he asked. "I saved it. I never have been a spender, and when I got out of the Marine Corps in 1961 after 26 years, I became an accountant at Pacific Power & Light because I had always wanted a white-collar job, and my wife and I got by fine on that paycheck, so I banked my pension from the Marine Corps and invested it."

Ruhberg was born near Milton-Freewater in March 1916 -- 30 years before the names of what were two separate communities were merged -- and grew up on a farm on the south fork of the Walla Walla River. His family grew their own food, and Ruhberg said that though there was very little money, they ate well and he never thought of his family as poor.

"And that was in the Depression, too," he said, "when a penny was real money. You could buy yourself a piece of black licorice that big with a penny, but I was more likely to save that penny, because we were eating well and I didn't need licorice."

He joined the Marine Corps in 1935 and was soon shipped off to China, then back to Astoria, where he met his wife, Dorothy -- she died in 2002 -- about 1940.

He saw service in World War II in the South Pacific, much of it as part of Adm. William Halsey Jr.'s entourage, though Ruhberg points out quickly that he himself "was just a peon."

He also served in Korea, landing at Inchon and taking part in the winter battle of Chosin Reservoir -- the Frozen Chosin of Marine Corps legend.

"That was cold," he said, "but you quickly learned that you had to think of your men first before you worried about yourself."
Tired of golf

Ruhberg seems to never have forgotten that lesson. As a four-decade Mason, a member of the Scottish Rite and a Shriner, service is an integral part of his life. Besides volunteering at Shriners Hospital, he's also involved in the community through Meals-On-Wheels; through the SMART program, where he helps children learn to read; and through his volunteer work at the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

"I'm a Mason, and I believe in charity," he said. "I practice the code of Masonry, and I like to help people."

"Besides," he said, "when I retired after 18 years at Pacific Power & Light in 1980, everyone told me I should relax. So I took up golfing with some guys, and it wasn't long before I got so tired of it that I started volunteering."

-- John Foyston; johnfoyston@news.oregonian.com

Thursday, June 4, 2009

"Get Me Out of Here"

I Just found out (through Twitter!) that Sanjayan Malakar (rember the Dude with the Faux-hawk on American Idol Season 6) has designated Shriners Hsopital fo Children as his chosen charity on "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!"

It airs on NBC at 7pm on Monday,Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. There's a link to the charities page page of the show's website: http//www.nbc.com/im-a-celebrity/about/charity.shtml

If you'd like to keep up with the Shriners Hospitals for Children via Twitter, go to Twitter.com and search for @Shriners Hopsitals.

Tammy Robbins

Did you get to the Concourse in Sacramento for the Shriners Hospital for Children/ here is some of what you missed!

How about the WSA Parade

WSA Clowns in San Jose May'09

Did you miss the WSA Clown Comptatation

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

2009 Burnn-Turn Classic

Eric Manmano's 3rd Annual Golf Classic for the beniffit of the El Zaribah Shrine Hospital Transporation Fund will be played June 20th. at the Legacy Golf Resort with a 7:30am Shotgun start.

This event includes a putting contest, a raffle besides a luncheon and a great time with your fellow golfers and you will be helping kids.

Over the first two years Eric has raised nearly $7,500 for the transportation fund and hope to top that this year. As everyone knows the cost of taking the kids to Shriners Hospital for Children-Los Angeles or Salt Lake has gone up just as their own gas bill have.

If you don't play golf and woould like to help with player registration, the putting contest, hole monitoring, or seting up the raffle contact the El Zaribah Shrine.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Busy end of the month

The West Valley Ocupatation Center LVN program held their Health Fair May 28th, and a big thanks goes to Al Malaikah's Marty Marrow and Dernnis Bruecker for manning our Shrine/Shriners Hospital display Table.

May27th I spoke at the San Fernando Valley ORT Ladies group. they were very nice and my 20 min. speech turned into 1:20 min. answering their questions. I had a great time.

If you have never been to a Truck Show you have to put the Cherokee Truck show on you calendar for next year. As soon as I get the dates I am putting it on my calendar and making hotel reservations to go to Gault,Ca. for a great time. They had over a hundred big Rigs and 25 custom or Hot Rods and Bikes on display.
The Cherokee Truck Parts puts on their show for the bennifit of Shriners Hospital for Children.
Click on the link( picture on the side of this page) and go look at the slide show of trucks.

Mark Elloit set up a Shrine Hospital for Children booth Sunday at a Fontana Truck Show and recieved a check for the new PICU center at the Los Angeles Shriner Hospital for Children.

Whats Apply Velley Shrine Club Doing?

Starting the Parade Season:

Here are some photos taken in Yucca Valley at Their GRUBSTAKES DAYS PARADE. We Joined the High Desert & Leagion of Honor in Spreading what Shriners do.

We have 6 cars going to Santa Maria June 6th for their parade.

We will be participating at the
FONTANA SPEEDWAY CAR SHOW AND PARADE ( RED WHITE & CRUISE) ON JULY 4. We get to drive around the Race Track. It will probably take us 20 minuites at top speed.

We applied to participate in the Hollywood Christmas parade this year. We are waiting to see if weve been accepted.