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The 2001 Parkinson's Disease Golf and Family Day
With Joan Snyder at the helm and her amazing event team working beside her, the Golf Outing and Family Fun Day on July 7th raised money and awareness for Parkinson's disease and gathered people who live with Parkinson's from all over the U.S. and one even from Canada!
The Golf Tournament, held at Donovan Golf Course in Peoria, proved to be a wonderful success with about 20 foursomes teeing off at 9:00 am after a continental breakfast and inspiring words from both Carol Walton, Executive Director of the Parkinson Alliance, and from Robin Elliott, Executive Director of the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, from New York City.
Meanwhile, in Three Sisters Park, preparations were being made for the gates to open for the Fun Day with volunteers, performers, food vendors, and at least 50 PWP's from all over the country, all trying to get things ready. This proved to be an awesome task, and the day ran very smoothly despite temperatures near 100 degrees and humidity at nearly 100%! There was something for everyone: a magician, a storyteller, a wildlife expert complete with animals for all to enjoy, and a balloon artist as well as a hot air balloon. Also, a silent auction was held throughout the day offering wonderful gifts from local businesses as well as beautiful handcrafted items from many of the PWP's. There were autographed, collectable books, gift packages and baskets, gift certificates and even a week's worth of private meal planning and preparation!
At 3pm, after the golfers arrived and had a chance to eat, the program started. This was a highlight of the day as comments and many who share a common goal to cure PD offered insights! Speakers included: Deacon Greg Serangelli from St. Edward Catholic Church, U.S. Congressman Lane Evans (himself a PWP), State Representative David Leitch, Chillicothe Mayor Don White, Carol Walton, Robin Elliott, Brenda Tucker and Nancy Abraham (co-founders of PLWP), John Lester (Director of Information -Department of Neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston), Michael Bryant (CEO of Methodist Medical Center), Joan Snyder of Chillicothe, and Peoria County Sheriff Chuck Schofield who also served as auctioneer. The program was MC'd by Gina Morss, TV anchorwoman from local NBC affiliate WEEK-TV. Some of the auction gifts included an $800 gold watch donated by CEFCU, an autographed Bradley Braves Basketball, an autographed copy of John Grisham's latest book, and a $300 pair of Maui Jim sunglasses. Also, a bocce ball tournament was held. Then to go with the sweltering temps, the music got hot as attendees were treated to an evening of awesome entertainment by The Central Illinois Jazz Allstars, Patrick Hazell and Sally Weisenberg, and the Famous Sidemen. Even the heat could not keep those with happy feet off the dance floor! All in all it was a day of lessons learned, friendships made, relationships cemented, awareness raised and money brought in.