The West Jefferson Walmart is currently holding a six-week fundraiser for the Children’s Miracle Network, and this weekend the store will be hosting an outdoor spring festival to raise money to benefit the Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte.
The festival will take place Friday afternoon, May 23, and all day Saturday, May 24, and will include games for kids and young adults, craft vendors, a silent auction, live music and plenty of food and drink.
CMN is a nonprofit that raises funds for children’s hospitals, medical research and community awareness of children’s health issues.
“We are two weeks into our six week span where we raise money for Children’s Miracle Network,” Assistant Manager Georgia Kahler said.
All of the money raised during the six weeks will go directly to the Levine Children’s Hospital.
“We’ve gotten together with a lot of the local businesses, asking for donations for the spring festival,” Kahler said.
The festival gets underway Friday afternoon when Fifth Third Bank will be sponsoring an Ident-a-Kid event, where children can be fingerprinted and get an ID. card to carry in the event they are separated from their parents or guardians.
On Saturday, there will be a duck pond, ring toss, lollipop tree, face-painting and basketball for the kids.
Store associates will hold a yard sale and sell homemade crafts, with a percentage of what they make going to CMN.
Over 30 themed gift baskets will be auctioned off as well, many with gift certificates to local business establishments.
There will also be a cornhole tournament. The winning team gets a brand new cornhole set.
Hot dogs, hamburgers, soft drinks, cotton candy, funnel cake and popcorn will all be for sale too.
The West Jefferson Police Department will be conducting safety inspections on bicycle helmets and children’s car seats.
Three bands will be performing Saturday afternoon.
All told, Kahler said she hopes to raise $30,000 this year.
“We’ve raised about $8,700 so far,” Kahler said.
Last year, a little over $20,000 was raised that went to the purchase of an ambulance.
Kahler knows firsthand the amazing services Children’s Miracle Network provides.
“I had twin granddaughters born 10 weeks early,” Kahler said.
Her granddaughters weighed three pounds at birth and spent 10 weeks in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at a children’s hospital.
“If you ever experience what CMN does after something like that, you really support it,” Kahler said. “We are really determined to raise this money,” Kahler said.
Alan Bulluck can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @albulluck.