By Sarah Colson
Snowstorm Jonas kept plenty of weekend plans from seeing the light of day, but it couldn’t stop the Endless Summer Band and hundreds of guests from attending the Mountain State’s Foundation Spirit Gala at the Millennium Centre, the annual black-tie event to raise funds for Niwonger Children’s Hospital.
Endless Summer Band, from Indianapolis, moved down the highway more slowly than planned, which led them to writing a new song, “Stuck on this Highway With You.” The impromptu song went viral.
Marsha Hammond with Mountain States Health Alliance said they put Niswonger Children’s Hospital on the map, which, more importantly, highlighted the need for the fundraiser in the first place.
All funds from the gala’s ticket sales, raffle sales, and the funds from Radiothon to take place on Feb. 29 and March 1, will go to the new unit within the hospital to be dedicated to babies born with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS). Through these fundraisers, Mountain States Foundation is aiming to raise $500,000.
The total raised Saturday wasn’t yet available by News & Neighbor’s deadline, but Hammond said the foundation raised more than $100,000 in ticket sales alone and about $80,000 from the auction that night. The raffle prize was donated by Champion Chevrolet Cadillac. MSHA team member Kathy Meade, who only bought one raffle ticket, won the choice between a 2016 Chevrolet Traverse, 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Double Cab, or a 2015 Cadillac ATS.
“We were really appreciative of everyone coming out despite the weather,” Hammond said, “and we had a really good time and raised a lot of funds for the NAS Unit.”
For more information, contact Hammond at (423) 302-3181 or HammondME@msha.com.