140 year of Shriners

140 year of Shriners

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Stampede for Shriners Hospital

Haines Stampede Rodeo

HAINES - The Haines Stampede Rodeo opens Saturday at 10 a.m. with benefit team roping. Proceeds from the event go to the Shriners Hospital of Children in Portland. Cost is $2 at the gate.
Rodeo action will fill the arena Sunday at 5:30 p.m. and Monday at 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $7 for adults, $3 for ages 5-12 and free for those 5 and under.
Monday's activities also feature a parade at 10 a.m., vendors in the park and a barbecue. Rodeo court tryouts follow the rodeo performance and fireworks are at dusk.
After the July 4 show, people are encouraged to stick around for the Cowboy Music Showdown. Local and professional talent will sing old cowboy songs. A fireworks show will begin at dusk.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

4th of July where will you be?

Hers are some of the Shrine Events & Parades I have been given. If your parade or event is not listed let us know, add a comment.
The Carson Valley Shrine Club has also entered the 4th of July parade in Virginia City. We will line up for this parade at 11 AM at the 4th Ward School, 528 South C Street. The parade will start at 12 noon. The Virginia City Masonic Lodge will be serving lunch following this parade.
4TH OF JULY  PANCAKE BREAKFAST  Presented by Stagecraft
137th Imperial Session      July 3-7, Denver, CO
El Zaribah Shriners Mted. Patrol will be in Prescot July2 for the Parade
Ballut Abyad Shrine has parades on July 2 in many parts of the state.
El Katif Shrine has July 4th Parades in, Washtucna, Grand Ole Fourth-Pasco, Smokiam Days - Soap Lake, Summer Festival - Colfax.
Masada Shrine  will be at the Toppenish  Parade July 4th. and at Imperial Session.


Friday, June 24, 2011

Firefighters give check to Shriners Hospital for Children

Firefighters in Yuba and Sutter counties presented a check Monday for $40,000 to Shriners Hospitals for Children-Northern California, the region's biggest and busiest pediatric burn center.
The money was raised by the Linda and Marysville Fireman's Associations, working with colleagues from the Marysville-Yuba City area.
The donation was accepted by Dr. David Greenhalgh, chief of burn surgery at Shriners Hospital in Sacramento.
Shriners Hospitals for Children provides a vital service to all residents in the region, said Linda Fire Capt. Tim Taylor in a statement.
"We are proud to support an organization that helps so many," he said.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Shriners Hospitals for Children will receive the prestigious Scientific Leadership Award.

Shriners Hospitals for Children and Oregon Health & Science University to Host 27th Annual National Marfan Foundation Conference, July 14-17, 2011

Shriners Hospitals for Children to Receive Scientific Leadership Award at July 16 Awards Luncheon

Quote startWe are happy to bring our conference back to the Pacific Northwest so our members in this part of the country can participate more easily. I’m sure they will find it is a life-changing experience.Quote end
Port Washington, NY (PRWEB) June 22, 2011
Shriners Hospitals for Children and Oregon Health & Science University are co-hosting the 27th Annual National Marfan Foundation(NMF) Conference on July 14-17, 2011. The NMF Annual Conference enables people with Marfan syndrome and related connective tissue disorders, and their families, to meet leading Marfan syndrome researchers and physicians and learn about new medical and genetic research firsthand. At the Conference, the NMF will celebrate 30 years since its inception.
On July 16, at the NMF awards luncheon to be held at the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront, Shriners Hospitals for Children will receive the Foundation’s prestigious Scientific Leadership Award. Shriners is being recognized for its patient care and research accomplishments and for its ongoing commitment to the basic science that will lead to a better life for people with Marfan syndrome and related disorders in the future.
Lynn Sakai, PhD, Senior Investigator, Portland Shriners Research Center, and Professor of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Oregon Health & Science University, is spearheading the conference initiative. A member of the NMF’s Professional Advisory Board since 1997, Dr. Sakai is a leading Marfan syndrome researcher whose work laid the foundation for the identification of fibrillin, the culprit in Marfan syndrome, and led to advanced work that pointed to the candidate gene for Marfan syndrome.
More than 400 individuals, primarily affected people and their families, are expected to attend the conference to learn about Marfan syndrome and related disorders and network with other people with these conditions.
“The NMF is looking forward to a very successful conference this year in Portland, where so much of the seminal research for the understanding of Marfan syndrome has been conducted,” said NMF President and CEO Carolyn Levering. “We are happy to bring our conference back to the Pacific Northwest so our members in this part of the country can participate more easily. I’m sure they will find it is a life-changing experience.”
NMF Conference has Family Focus
The NMF Annual Conference begins with evaluation days on July 14-15 when people who have a diagnosis or suspect that they have Marfan syndrome or a related connective tissue disorder can be evaluated by medical experts from all over the country (by appointment only). The “health fair” offers people who do not have access to medical experts at home an opportunity to be evaluated by knowledgeable doctors from the host institutions and other leading Marfan syndrome clinics around the country. Echocardiography and eye exams will be conducted by OHSU physicians and staff on July 14, and orthopedic and genetic evaluations will be conducted at Shriners Hospitals for Children on July 15.
General conference sessions are on July 16, with medical presentations and a panel discussion led by researchers and physicians who have special expertise in Marfan syndrome and related disorders. They will address a range of topics, including cardiac, orthopedic, pulmonary and ophthalmic issues, cardiac surgery in adults and children, and pain management.
After the general plenary session, conference attendees can attend small-group workshops about specific medical concerns led by physicians and other medical professionals. On July 17, workshops about psycho-social concerns will be offered.
To make it easier for affected individuals and families, the NMF offers conference scholarships, which are funded by the NMF membership through three funds: the Heaney Angels Fund, Weiss Scholarship Fund and Julie Kurnitz Memorial Fund. Awards are based on financial need and priority is given to those who do not have access to specialty Marfan care at home and have never attended an NMF Conference before.
The National Marfan Foundation is grateful for the generous support of the conference from Andersen Construction, Bank of the West, Beattie Charitable Trust, Chetco Shrine Club, Klamath Falls Shrine Club, OHSU Foundation, Rose City Camp No. 77, Sherman Jr./Sr. High School and Union County Shrine Club.
Marfan Syndrome and the National Marfan Foundation
Marfan syndrome is a potentially fatal genetic disorder of connective tissue. Marfan syndrome and related connective tissue disorders affect approximately 200,000 Americans. Because connective tissue makes up the entire body, the disorder manifests itself in many body systems, including the skeletal system, eyes, lungs, blood vessels and heart. Many people with Marfan syndrome and several of the related disorders experience an expansion of the aorta. Without proper monitoring and medications to reduce the stress on the aorta, affected people are at high risk for aortic dissection or rupture, which could result in sudden death.
Studies about the increased life expectancy for people with Marfan syndrome provide great hope and optimism, but only through increased awareness, earlier diagnosis and proper treatment can people with the disorder expect to live a normal life span.
The NMF was founded in 1981 to provide accurate and timely information about the disorder to patients, family members and physicians; to serve as a resource for medical information and patient support; and to support and foster research.
To obtain additional information about the conference and to register, please call the NMF at 800-8-MARFAN or visit the NMF on line at http://www.marfan.org.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Boy who lost his legs keeps chasing his dreams

By Nkoyo Iyamba
SALT LAKE CITY -- For many kids, summer is a time to play and be active. That's exactly what it will be like for a Utah boy who has spent his life without legs.
Twelve-year-old Hunter Woodhall was born without a calf bone in his left leg, and his right ankle was fused at the joint. So when he was about a year old, his parents brought him to Shriners Hospital in Salt Lake City where doctors amputated both his legs.
Hunter Woodhall was born without a calf bone in his left leg, and his right ankle was fused at the joint.
That's really when he started to move.
Today, Hunter has two sets of special prosthetics, one for everyday use and the other for sports. He's a bit of a sports fanatic.
"I like to play football and basketball. Those are my two favorite sports," he said. "I run in 5K's pretty often. I'm going to be running in the Summer Olympics, Summer Games."
Hunter's doctor Peter Springs says children seem to have the advantage when dealing with losing arms or legs as opposed to adults.
"He's sort of unique in the sense that he's missing both of his legs and yet at the same time, he's super athletic," he said. "Adults they have to cope with what they're missing. With a kid, you give ‘em something really young, and they'll pull a stand like any other kid. They'll start cruising around sofas and coffee tables, running or walking, all those sorts of things naturally. And they'll just do whatever they can with what they're given."
It's a life lesson Hunter's mom Barb Woodhall tries to teach her son.
"I run in 5K's pretty often," Hunter said. "I'm going to be running in the Summer Olympics, Summer Games."
"With any disability that anyone has, I think 90 percent of that is attitude," she said. "We've never treated him as a handicapped person. We've just treated him as a normal kid."
Hunter is realistic about his limitations, but he maintains a great attitude about his challenges.
"I can't do some things, like I can't jump as high as a lot of kids and I can't wiggle my toes," he said. "It can be a struggle sometimes but at other times it can be really fun and enjoyable."
At Shriners Hospital in Salt Lake City, an average of 200 prosthetics and 3,200 orthotics devices are fitted for children each year. That's about 11 repairs per month for kids like Hunter.
Shriners and the Salt Lake City Police Department are teaming Saturday, June 25, to hold a free screening clinic to identify other kids like Hunter who have lost their limbs and may be good candidates for prosthetics. The clinic will be held at at Pioneer Precinct, 1040 W. 700 South in Salt Lake City from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Email: niyamba@ksl.com

North Dakota Standing Tall

 Shriners help Watford City teen through tough growth spurt

By Jacob Brooks, Williston Herald

Jacob Brooks | Williston Herald Kira Kostad, 17, is about to enter her senior year at Watford City High School. She will do so after battling with kyphosis for the past five years.

Watford City teenager Kira Kostad is feeling good and walking tall, but it wasn't always so. Kira, 17, is on the tail end of a five-year journey that has taken her back and forth to Minnesota for medical treatment and a surgery that completely rebuilt her spine with dozens of titanium rods.

It all started when Kira was 12 years old, and her parents and friends noticed a curvature in the girl's spine.

"It got really bad," said Kira's mother, Tina Kostad.

Kira was eventually diagnosed with a type of kyphosis, a condition that causes the spine to grow irregularly and can have lifelong painful effects.

While Kira's condition was not causing her pain, she was noticeably walking at an ever-increasing angle, her mother said. When she was 13, she had to wear a body brace to try and keep the condition in check.

The brace was a heavy, cumbersome device that Kira had to wear to school and everywhere else. In the last five years, wearing that brace was probably the most difficult part of the whole ordeal.

But things changed when Tina Kostad noticed an ad in the Williston Herald that representatives of Shriners Hospital for Children in Minneapolis would be in Bismarck for consultation.

Things took off from there, and doctors discovered Kira had Scheuermann's kyphosis, which can occur in children and growing teenagers, and can be corrected with surgery.

Normally, a surgery of this type would cost tens of thousands of dollars or more in medical expenses — a cost that would be hard to come by for Tina Kostad, an elementary school lunch lady, and her husband, who were also raising two other children.

But at the Shriner's Hospital, all expenses were paid. And the Williston Shrine Club provided the transportation costs to and from the Twin Cities, Tina Kostad said.

The Shriners is a fraternal organization recognized for its social and philanthropic activities.

"With the Shriners, we knew she would be well taken care of," Tina Kostad said.

Still, the decision to get the surgery was not easy. Even though she walked at an angle, Kira felt fine. She could walk, run, play with dogs and do everything else she normally did.

"That was probably the hardest part, because to her, everything was fine," Tina Kostad said.

It was a tough call, but the family decided to go through with the surgery, which occurred in February 2009.

Kira had to stay in the hospital about 10 days afterwards, and on the way back to Watford City had to lay on an inflatable bed in the back of the car.

Full recovery took about a year, and there are still some things Kira can never do, such as ride roller coasters.

But she's OK with that. As she prepares to enter her senior year at Watford City High School, she will have no problem doing the things she enjoys such as reading, drawing, hanging out with friends and playing with dogs.

And she will be looking good and standing tall while she does it.

Tina Kostad said the journey would have been much more difficult without the Shriners.

"We would never have had the care that we had," she said. "Thank you is never enough."

Gardnerville,NV. Sand volleyball tourney to raise money for Shriners

Sometimes a story just kind of jumps up and grabs your heart.

Such was the case for local fitness trainer Kelly Salazar, who had two seperate clients come in during the last year who endured spinal cord injuries either directly or within their family.

In both cases, Shriners Hospitals for Children — a network of 22 nonprofit hospitals across North America the provides treatment regardless of the patients' ability to pay — played a role in the recovery.

“A lot of people don't know exactly what Shriners is,” Salazar said. “I'm 47 years old and I didn't know the magnitude of what they do until I heard about these children.

“Hearing their stories, it was heart-wrenching. I don't know exactly what it was, but it was something that really stuck with me.”

Salazar and her husband had been talking about hosting a barbecue and setting up some sand volleyball courts on their property.

“We just thought, if we were going to do it, we should do it for a cause,” Salazar said. “I wanted to help bring awareness to Shriners and also raise some money for it as well.

So they scheduled the Spike for Shriners Sand Volleyball Tournament for Saturday June 25 with a 9 a.m. check-in and 10 a.m. tournament start. It will be at 1509 Ortega Way, which is off of Lombardy Road (turn right off of Buckeye past East Valley Cemetery.

“It could be a one-day tournament, or go as long as two days, depending on how many teams we get,” Salazar said. “We'll have a DJ all day and hopefully into the night and a silent auction and raffle.”

Cost for registration is $30 per person (four-person teams). All players will receive a visor and dinner with their entry fee. Admission for spectators is $10, with dinner costing an additional $10.

Salazar said RV and tent sites were also available.

“Getting to know what these kids and their parents have gone through in their injuries, it has really touched me. Hopefully this will be a fun day where the kids can tell their stories and we can show our support for Shriners as a community.

“There will be representatives from Shriners in Sacramento, some nurses. We're hoping for some club teams to participate. It should be a lot of fun.”

To register for the tournament, visit www.energizestudios.com/volleyball.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Disaster Preparedness in the Making: Two Marry After Meeting as Volunteers for Acacia Creek and Masonic Homes

SAN FRANCISCO, June 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In the late evening of May 1, 2011, after working on emergency preparedness classes, Larry Sadler, Masonic Home resident, popped the question and asked Donna Philpott, Acacia Creek resident, if she would accept an engagement ring. She said, "Yes!"
Only an emergency could tear them apart. "We would separate, go to our communities, and be in touch with radios. We would act accordingly, certain of each other's welfare, then others'. We would act out what we preached in the training classes we put on for team members."
The two tried to keep their wedding plans a secret, but word got out. With only a week to plan, excited staff from both communities rolled up their sleeves and got busy with preparations – invitations, decorations, a bridal bouquet, refreshments, wedding cake, and photographers.
On Friday, May 20, at 2:00 p.m., 261 residents and staff attended the personalized ceremony at the Masonic Home in Union City, just southeast of San Francisco. The Acacia Creek Marketing Department held a private reception before the wedding. Jeffrey Dillon, interim executive director/administrator of Acacia Creek, decorated and drove the departure car, painted "Just Married".
"We were overwhelmed, flattered, and very humbled by the support of our friends at the Masonic Home and Acacia Creek. There's no place that we'd rather be. We are truly thankful," the couple said. If they were given any wish, they both agreed that they would want to always remain as happy as on their wedding day.
"We have a lot in common – our background in Ham radio, emergency services, and our ability to think along the same lines; we found ourselves laughing together. We enjoy plays and music and we're still laughing at life," Larry says.
Donna quipped, "He always makes me laugh, is patient in explaining things to me, and was a good nurse during my eye surgery and recovery. We share the same passion for teaching and sharing with others."
The Masonic Home is a Masonic Senior Care Community. Acacia Creek is a continuing care retirement community, open to Masons and non Masons 55+ years. www.acaciacreek.org

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The 38th Annual Wyoming Shrine Bowl

Local stars compete in Shrine Bowl

Buffalo graduate Jace Jensen (2) tries to break away from the South defense in the Shrine Bowl Saturday in Casper. Jensen led all rushers with 84 yards. Bulletin photo by Tom Milstead.
The 38th Annual Wyoming Shrine Bowl started out as another football experience for Shawn Straub, but after the players’ traditional trip to the Shriners Hospital for Children in Salt Lake City, the purpose of the week and the game changed.

“The children’s hospital and the kids that were there was an amazing experience,” said Straub, who was the 2011 six-man football player of they year for Kaycee High School. “It really changed my attitude towards the game. It was all about us at first, it was the South vs. the North, but when we all got in the same building with the kids, we were all on the same team. It hit home, basically. It was a great experience.”

Straub was one of four Johnson County players, along with Buffalo High School’s Hayden Kessler, Jace Jensen and Lee Iberlin, to play in the annual all-star game Saturday at Natrona County High School. The locals represented the North team, which out-gunned its southern counterparts 34-28 in an offensive showcase. The profits from the game went to the hospital.

The players were only together for a week before the game, but Jensen, who scored the North’s first touchdown and led all rushers with 84 yards, said by the time they took the field Saturday night they were a tight-knit unit.

“It was weird at first, playing with your rivals and all that,” Jensen said. “We came together after day one and we just put together a good game.

“It was a heck of an experience. I had more fun this week than I had probably all the way through high school. This is one heck of a bunch.”

 Buffalo coach Pat Lynch and Kaycee coach Dustin Sipe were assistant coaches for the North team. Both coaches said the Shrine Bowl was an excellent opportunity for them to work with their players for the last time.

“We talked before the game about how much it meant for both of us to get to be around each other again,” Sipe said of his final game with Straub, whom he coached in football and track. “It was great. It was great to get to coach him again and see him fit in well with all of these all-stars from bigger schools.”

“I thought they played pretty well,” Lynch said of the Buffalo representatives. “Hayden got a lot of playing time and Jace ran the ball a lot. Lee really surprised me and the other coaches all week long at how he played that outside linebacker position. All in all, all three kids did a great job tonight.”

Kessler had five rushes for 13 yards and one catch for seven. Iberlin recorded four solo tackles from his outside linebacker position. Straub, who played on the defensive line in the Shrine Bowl after playing linebacker at Kaycee, had to learn a new position in the week leading up to the game.

“I hadn’t been in a three-point stance in two years,” Straub said.

“We switched him because coming out of six-man, making reads as linebacker against an 11-man offense would be tough for someone who hasn’t done it a lot,” Sipe said.

Kessler said playing with Jensen and Iberlin in the contest will be one of his most fond memories of his time as a Bison.

“This is what we worked our whole high school careers for,” he said. “To end it like this is, I can’t put that into words.

“It was awesome. We spent the whole week together and to get to play with Lee and Jace one more time meant the world to me and I know it meant just as much to them.”

Iberlin said he’ll remember the whole week, from visiting the hospital, to the time with his Buffalo teammates, to bonding with a bunch of guys there were strangers two weeks ago as a great experience.

“Visiting those kids in the hospital was definitely an eye-opening experience that I’ll never forget in my life,” he said.

Story by Tom Milstead, tom@buffalobulletin.com.

Montana East-West Shrine game tickets on sale

On July 16, at 7 pm., the annual East-West Shrine football game will be played in Laurel, at Laurel High School's sports complex.

The Locomotives will be represented by punter Ethan Albrecht, inside linebacker Chase Kaufman, and tackle David Swecker. LHS football head coach Mike Ludwig will be an assistant for the East squad as well.

The Montana Shrine Bowl is the oldest continuous single-state sponsored Shrine High School All-Star Game in North America and is played in support of Shriners Hospitals for Children.

A Shrine Parade the day of the game gets people in the mood for the evening finale. The game itself, for the first time in its history, will be broadcast live across Montana on CBS KTVQ.

The annual cost to operate the 22 Shriners Hospitals is over $726,000,000, an amount which comes to more than $2 million per day. Funding that expense inspires Shriners to continue to sponsor this all-star football game, and others across the nation.

Shriners said they genuinely appreciate Laurel area's support and attendance of this game, which honors players from every school class from AA to C, across the state. The support also benefits the players, and especially, the kids in the hospitals.
Tickets may be purchased at web sites montanashrinegame.org/tickets.html, or albedoo.org/game.html or from the Al Bedoo Shrine at 1125 Broadwater Avenue in Billings. They will also be available at the gate the day of the game. General admission tickets are $10 and reserved seating is $15.

The gates open at 5 pm., followed by a 6:30 pm. pre-game show, player introductions at 6:40 pm., and finally the kick off at 7 pm.

Spokane Indians Set To Unveil New Mascot On Opening Night

by Spokane Indians
Move over OTTO...there's a new mascot in town.
The Spokane Indians announced today that the team will introduce a new mascot sponsored by Shriners Hospitals for Children to fans on Opening Night on Friday. The mysterious mascot will join the world-renowned OTTO, superhero Recycle Man, and stadium host Jamie Patrick as part of Spokane's version of the Fantastic Four.

The identity of the mascot has been kept a secret from even the Indians staff and players, who are anxiously awaiting to meet the new creature for the first time at Avista Stadium. Fans will have the opportunity to name the new mascot in a contest that will run from June 17th to the 21st.
OTTO could not immediately be reached for comment, but it is believed that he is very excited to welcome another mascot to Avista Stadium.

The new mascot already has a very busy schedule. Not only will it appear at every Indians home game, but will also make up to ten appearances a year visiting children at Shriners Hospitals for Children.

"We're excited to be a part of history," said Sally Mildren, Director of Public Relations for Shriners Hospitals for Children in Spokane. "The new mascot will represent all of our values and will be a great asset for the kids in our area."

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The 25th Annual El Bekal Shrine Invitational Golf Tournament

Mark your calendar for our 25th Annual El Bekal Shrine Invitational Golf Tournament, Monday, June 20, 2011 at Upland Hills Country Club.
Start the day with lunch served at the club house grill and a chance for you to mix with your fellow golfers and friends. After the tournament we have dinner served in the Club House Dining room, and we are planning a menu that everyone will enjoy.
There will be awards and prizes presented for the winners and a lucky loser.
If you can guess how many tee’s are in the jar you too will win a prize.
If you are not a golfer you can have fun as a volunteer, and get a free dinner for helping.
E-mail me at: isailhbca@earthlink.net to sign up, or call 714-960-2120 if you have any questions and ask for Rosemary or me. We will be there to answer them.
We can all have fun and make this a great event.
The purpose of this tournament is to develop Shrine awareness.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Calling all tweeters

Tweet for a Cause at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open Tweet Up, June 15
Tweet It: Join @jtshrinersopen & tweet for a cause at the #JTSHCOTweetup on June 15, 6-8pm @SportingHouseLV. All proceeds benefit @shrinershosp!
The Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open will host a Tweetup for a Cause the evening before the US Open kicks off on Wednesday, June 15 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at The Sporting House Bar & Grill located inside New York-New York Hotel & Casino.
For a donation of $10, golf fans are invited to enjoy a complimentary cocktail, free appetizers and one-day admission to the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin from September 25-October 2, 2011.
A lucky winner will be drawn each half hour to win raffle prizes including four tickets to The Hill, TPC Summerlin's tented hospitality venue overlooking the 16th, 17th and 18th holes. Other prizes include merchandise from the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and a $50 gift certificate to The Sporting House.
Guests are encouraged to tweet throughout the evening using the Twitter handle @jtshrinersopen and the hashtag #JTSHCOTweetup. All proceeds collected will support Shriners Hospitals for Children and their mission to provide specialty pediatric care for children, innovative research and outstanding teaching programs.

For additional information and to RSVP for the Tweetup please visit www.twtvite.com/JTSHCOTweetup

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fundraising can be a Drag

Glen (Bruno) Bradley, owner of Ibex Fuels in Grand Falls-Windsor, purchased this super pro class top dragster last fall with one purpose in mind: raising money and awareness for Shriners Hospitals for Children. Since then he has raced it across the Atlantic provinces, and said he is planning for another big racing summer this year. — Photo by Andrea Gunn/Special to the Advertiser
Glen (Bruno) Bradley, owner of Ibex Fuels in Grand Falls-Windsor, purchased this super pro class top dragster last fall with one purpose in mind: raising money and awareness for Shriners Hospitals for Children. Since then he has raced it across the...
Andrea Gunn  RSS Feed

Devoted Shriner races for a good cause

Top class pro dragsters barrelling down asphalt at over a hundred miles an hour is not the first thing that comes to mind when one thinks of Shriners fundraisers.
For most of us, the Shriners conjure up images of the iconic hats and community parades, not helmets and race tracks.
But that’s how Bruno does it.
His name is actually Glen Bradley, but he prefers to go by Bruno, and since moving to the area two years ago he’s become known as a businessman. He owns three different enterprises in Grand Falls-Windsor, including Ibex Fuels.
But first and foremost, Bruno says he’s a Shriner, and proud of it.
Originally from the Yukon, he has lived all over, from the United States to Africa. No matter where he is, being a Shriner is a big part of his life.
When he came to Grand Falls-Windsor from Alberta, it was no different.
“When I first moved here it was just myself and my wife and we were doing stuff own our own,” he said. “The Shrine Club in Botwood wasn’t even there then, we were just doing our own thing, trying to raise money and run raffles.”
Now Bruno is a member of the Shawnadithit Shrine Club in Botwood, but he still dances to the beat of his own drum with his many fundraising endeavours.
And the reason he does it is for the Shriners Children’s Hospitals.
Helping hospitals
There are 22 Shriners hospitals in North America — 20 in the United States, one in Mexico and one in Quebec.
Their specialized services include orthopedics, burn care and spinal cord surgery. They are entirely needs based and open to anyone under the age of 18.
“Every single thing (Shriners Hospitals) do is 100 per cent paid for. We fly out the parents, we look after the children, we feed the parents, we get them hotel rooms, and it’s free to any of the patients,” said Bruno.
“It’s non-denominational — it doesn’t matter what race, creed or colour you are, we’re all human beings.”
Bruno said there’s a huge need for services for children across North America, and he knows of several children in the Grand Falls-Windsor area who have received care from Shriners Hospitals.
High-quality care facilities cost a lot of money, and Bruno says the Shriners must raise millions and millions of dollars every year to keep them going.
One of the things he does to raise money is drag racing.
Conversation starter
There are several drag strips in the province including the Thunder Valley Speedway in Bishop’s Falls and the Clarenville Dragway — which holds racing events every other week in the summer with the opportunity to win hefty prizes.
“The fastest dragsters on the planet are built and run in Newfoundland, this is a hot spot for drag racing,” said Bruno.
“You have Skagit County, Washington, (which) is really big now for drag racing. There’s a part outside of Phoenix that’s really big, and then you have the Avalon Peninsula in Newfoundland, Canada.”
Bruno said Ibex Fuels has one car in the making and two cars racing with two drivers, including Bruno’s own super pro top class dragster, which he picked up last fall. Since then he has raced it across the Maritimes and is planning for another big summer.
His car has a lot of donated parts, but cars like his can cost up to $70,000. All the expenses for the Ibex cars are paid out of pocket by the owners, while every single cent of winnings goes to the Shriners Hospitals.
Bruno also uses the car as a tool to open dialogue about the Shriners work. At a local trade show a couple weeks ago, for example, he brought his car in for people to look at and sit behind the wheel, but the conversations started were all about the Shriners Hospital.
“This is just another thing. You can get so many people talking, (at the trade show) I don’t know how many people came through that booth,” he said. “And I had a chance to tell them that everything we do no matter how big or how little out of this car goes to the Shrine.”
Bruno doesn’t just race to raise money for the Shriners. Between his three businesses he almost always has something going on, whether it’s raffling a signed Gretzky jersey at a trade show, which he did this month, or a Mosquito Magnet out of his store. Everything he raffles off he buys himself, and every cent from the raffles goes straight to the Shriners Hospitals.
“There’s not a certain portion there of goes to administration or for expenses,” he said. “Even printing the tickets is donated (by local people).”
He has set up a dumping station for RVs at Ibex Fuels for the camping season. The price? A $2 donation to Shriners Hospitals.
Bruno has also set up a small community centre area at the back of Ibex Fuels which he rents to groups for free, but when they want to say thanks, Bruno insists they donate to the Shriners.
“I don’t like to be in the forefront, I’m in the background making the money,” he said. “I go get the ball, hand it to the boys and say run with it.”
Bruno said philanthropy has become an important part of the way he lives his life, and moving to Grand Falls-Windsor has given him more of an opportunity to be a role model for his son.
“I’m not in any way, shape or form a religious person but I have a certain number of morals I live my life by and they’re fairly strict …,” said Bruno.
“It’s so important that we have people looking after people. We have a moral and social responsibility as businessmen and as leaders of our community to look after our community.”
When asked why he decided to run his life and businesses the way he does, Bruno smiles.
“I’m a Shriner. There is no other way for me to do business.”

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Twin Falls Id. Bank raises $ for Patient Travel Fund

Bank raises more than $3,000 for Shriners
Last week, employees of Farmers National Bank, which has six area branches, participated in a fundraising effort for the Shriners Patient Travel Fund.
Lee Cline, vice president cashier at the bank’s Buhl branch, reported that $3,390.30 was raised for the fund.
Cline said employees, including the bank’s matching fund, brought in $2,232 and customer contributions totaled $1,158.30.
“Day to day we have about 95 employees throughout all of our branches, and they all participated in the effort,” Cline said.
Employees donated money in order to wear casual clothing, each day sporting their favorite high school football team jerseys.
The bank also raised awareness for Tuesday’s Shrine All-Star Football Game at Twin Falls High School.
The Shriner organization has a 22-hospital strong health care system dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing specialty care, research and teach programs for medical professionals and provides care regardless of the patients’ ability to pay.
“All of the money raised will help children from our communities that need care be transported to and from a Shriner hospital,” Lee said.