Dinner to benefit hurricane victims

Rebecca Neipp

News Review Staff Writer

Dinner to benefit hurricane victimsA spaghetti dinner will be held Thursday, Sept. 28, to raise funds for victims of Texas and Florida disasters. Dinner will be served for $5 per person from 5-8 p.m. at Kerr McGee Center.

“When we did our first Ridge Project auction, it just happened to be at the same time the Oklahoma hurricane hit,” said Gary Charlon, a founder of Ridge Project and one of the event coordinators.

“We decided at the time to donate the proceeds to Oklahoma, and we were able to raise $5,000 for Convoy of Hope.”

When disaster first struck Texas, one of the Ridge Project volunteers suggested a benefit for Texas, which later became a joint benefit for Florida as other storms subsequently hit.

Harvey hit Texas on Aug. 25 as a Category 4 Hurricane, killing an estimated 72, displacing hundreds of thousands of residents, and causing up to $100 billion in damage.

Just days later, Hurricane Irma — which dwarfed Harvey in size and power — wiped out entire settlements in the Caribbean before landing in Florida. At press time, the death toll was in the dozens, and rising by the day. Millions of impacted residents have lost homes, power or access to clean water.

Ridge Project started years ago as a volunteer effort to beautify public spaces in the community — stirring up an altruistic spirit as well as community pride.

“But I think it’s also important to come together to help other communities,” said Charlon. “We don’t know when we are going to be in that position, where we are relying on others to help us.”

Patrons can purchase a dinner for $5 per person. “We wanted to keep the cost low in order to give as many people as possible an opportunity to participate,” said Charlon.

Sponsors, including State Farm, Ridgecrest Area Association of Realtors, Tender Cuts Meat and he Swap Sheet, have donated money to underwrite the costs of food, so that more money can go to Convoy of Hope.

“People can also make donations at the dinner. We are joining with Convoy of Hope again, and I’m hoping to make a donation of $5,000 for each state.”

“This is also an opportunity for members of our community to help those who live here. One of our reasons for keeping the costs low is to encourage people to buy tickets to for those who might not be able to afford to attend otherwise.”

Charlon also welcomed others interested in becoming sponsors to contact him at 760-446-4279 or Donna Hocker of RAAR at 760-499-1098. Tickets are at Red Rock Books, Gary Charlon State Farm, Lighthouse, RAAR and Frey’s Gun Shop.

Pictured: Ridge Project volunteers, shown at one of their many fund-raisers, will once again donate their time to feed the community to raise funds for a good cause. -- Photo by Ray Hocker

Story First Published: 2017-09-22