2017-05-11 / Columns

Auction raises funds for Omena Fire Hall

By LESLIE DISCH
Phone/fax 386-5686


MARY HELEN PHILLIPS, left, and Alice Hauske served as auctioneers at the Omena auction. MARY HELEN PHILLIPS, left, and Alice Hauske served as auctioneers at the Omena auction. Omena’s Club 21 is very involved in working with Leelanau Township to restore the Omena Community room to a functional condition. The community room is part of the Omena Fire Hall.

For several years now, the plumbing has not worked and the building and meeting room have needed repairs and renovating. Thanks to the efforts of many Omena and township citizens, the township has agreed to provide part of the funding to do the necessary work. The Leelanau Township Community Foundation (LTCF) has stepped up to provide a significant contribution towards the project and Club 21 has agreed to spearhead raising the remainder of the funding. Donations can be made to the LTCF, designated to the Omena Club 21 Fund.

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This past week, Club 21 held its annual White Elephant auction. The event was very successful and, as always, produced a lot of laughs. The event has traditionally supported Club 21’s scholarship fund. This year’s proceeds will also go toward the Community Room repairs.

Many thanks to the Tamarack Gallery for the donation of raffle prizes and many auction items. Their donations added that touch of class to the event, while most of the other donations provided the laughs. Although, the brownies that someone baked and included with their items were worth whatever Debby spent on some of the more questionable items that she came home with. Bette Wheeler knitted a beautiful baby blanket that was also a raffle item, and there were several donations of mouth-watering baked goods.

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Congratulations to Zac Kalchik on his graduation from Aquinas College in East Grand Rapids last weekend with a degree in sports management. Zac graduated magna cum laude, after making the dean’s list all eight semesters. He also received the Kinesiology Award, and was a member of Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society. Zac is the son of Omena residents Nate and Becky Kalchik.

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Six Rule cousins will be arriving this weekend for the annual spring opening and project week at the Rule Cottage. Luke Robinson and Frank Huss are coming from Cincinnati; Steve Hessel from Corvallis, Oregon; Ed Hessel from San Diego; Jamie Cromartie from Egg Harbor City, NJ; and John Cromartie from Vienna, Va. They will be joining their cousins Jim Wickemeyer from Omena and East Leroy, Mich., and Rink Smith and Debby Disch from Omena. Jamie’s major project whenever he is here in the spring is to pull and destroy as much garlic mustard as possible. This year he hopes to meet Janet Dickerson, who is a tireless advocate and worker to rid the area of garlic mustard. Garlic mustard is an aggressive invasive species that drives out the native plants, especially wildflowers such as trillium and Lady Slippers.

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Leelanau Conservancy volunteers are doing their part to help eradicate garlic mustard. There will be a workbee Saturday at 10 a.m. at Palmer Woods. The Conservancy is also looking for the first volunteers in a Citizen Science Initiative to help the Conservancy monitor its natural areas and preserves for invasive species. If you love to be out in the woods, this volunteer job is for you.

The Conservancy is also making its rescued wildflowers available for Mother's Day gifts. Their annual Wildflower Rescue Sale is on tap for Memorial Day weekend on the Village Green in Leland, but you can purchase some plants at their office in Leland now on a first come, first serve basis. Come by this week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to see what’s available.

There are two Conservancy Mother’s Day weekend hikes. Saturday at 8 a.m. is Birding at Lighthouse West. Docents Ed Ketterer and Ann McInnis will lead a search for migrating spring birds of all sizes and shapes. They will explore the various habitats of Lighthouse West and, if time permits, check parts of Leelanau State Park. Meet at the Lighthouse West parking lot. Bring binoculars and keep in mind that it is often cool and breezy at the tip of the peninsula this time of year.

On Mother’s Day at 2 p.m. you can explore Belanger Creek Preserve, an amazing, pristine, trail-less area. Omena resident Mary Smart will be one of the docents along with McInnis and Beth Chiles. Wildflowers will be at their peak and they will look for evidence of “wildlife moms.” Walking sticks may be helpful.

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Happy Birthday to John Ray, Nicholas Bronke, Harold McKee, and to Charlotte Louise Murphy, who turns 4. Happy Anniversary to Greg and Marcia McMorrow and to Ralph and Nancy Kalchik. Happy Mothers Day!

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