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Past Events

"Shake, Rattle & Roll for Parkinson's Disease" 5/25-26/2002

by, Joan E. Blessington Snyder

On Saturday, May 25 and Sunday May 26, we held our first "Shake, Rattle & Roll for Parkinson's Disease." We includes my friend and partner in crime, Holly Angus, proprietor Pat Sullivan of "Le Vieux Carre" in downtown Peoria plus the countless others who helped with their time, treasure and talent to help pull of our most successful PD event. Saturday began with a symposium presented by the online support group, This was our second year presenting this round-table discussion involving Ph.D medical researchers, neurosurgeons, neurologists, and people who live with pd. Named "PATIENTS AS PROVIDERS," this program was held at the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Peoria, Il. This year's program included presentations by Dr. Richard Weber, Ph.D (Associate Professor of Immunopharmacology and Microbiology) who spoke on "Parkinson's: The Present and the Future" and Dr. Richard Lister, M.D. (Associate Dean for Strategic Planning and Development) whose speech was entitled: "Our Vision: A Center of Excellence."

The crowd begins to arrive

We also heard from Carol Walton, Executive Director of the Parkinson Alliance about how close we are coming to finding better treatments and eventually a way to cure PD. The audience participation in the question and answer/discussion part of the program was wonderful and intelligent questions were asked of all three of our participating doctors: Dr. Rick Weber, Dr. Patrick Tracey (neurosurgeon), and Dr. Jai Kumar (neurologist). All agreed that this excellent program was a success. Then, our group went out to St. Edward School Gym to enjoy a time of camaraderie and friendship as we attended our "parkie picnic." We celebrated the upcoming marriage of Tom Kelly and Tami McNamera and the birthdays of Laura Dean (Harley), Ann Campbell (AJ) and Dr. Rick. On Sunday morning, bright and early, we were all downtown Peoria at Le Vieux Carre, a wonderful, 100 year old building that has been restored by Pat Sullivan to resemble the French Quarter buildings in New Orleans. This lovely building was covered in back and red balloons and set up with a variety of tables: food, registration, welcome, raffle and prizes and did I mention food?

Dr. Rick leads the walk
Dr. Rick leads the walk
The food was all donated. We were treated to a wonderful and sumptuous spread including some of the best pastries and breads, fresh fruit and pasta.
Joan and Greg
Joan Synder and Greg
The weather was perfect-breezy and just warm enough and the crowd was wonderful--considerate and happy and truly committed to the cause. We had over 200 walkers and collected amost $16,000! Amidst balloons and jazz music, everyone listened for their number to be called out to win a myriad of prizes ranging from $250 sunglasses donated from Maui Jim to an overnight stay at the downtown Holiday Inn City Centre with dinner for 2 at Jim's Downtown Steakhouse and a horse-drawn carriage ride to books by Michael J. Fox, A.J. Campbell and Carol Hercun from the PD listserve, and handmade Raggedy Anne & Andy dolls made by PLWP member Jane Ross.

It was all over much too soon. My especial thanks go out to Carol Walton of the Parkinson Alliance and the Tuchman Foundation for their kind support and help-always; to Nan & Brenda of PLWP, and to all those who made the trip here. Thanks also to my family, friends and sponsors-you
made it work!

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