50th annual Ernie Blankenship Radio-Telethon surpasses $120K as Highland Countians show support for HCSCA
The 50th Annual Ernie Blankenship Memorial Radio-Telethon March 30, 2022 brought in more than $120,000 in pledges as the Rotary Clubs of Greenfield and Hillsboro put on events to entertain, educate and raise money for the Highland County Society for Children and Adults.
The events took place from 7-9 p.m. in the two communities, emanating from the GCTV Studios at McClain High School in Greenfield and the Hillsboro Orpheum. Viewers watched on local Spectrum TV channels or via streaming over the Internet, with periodic updates given by WVNU 97.5 FM and WSRW Radio 1590 AM.
The Hillsboro telethon event was live-streamed on the Society’s website, hicoso.organd remains available for viewing. At the end of the evening, $114,561 had been pledged, but additional pledges and donations were received over the next several weeks to surpass the $120,000 plateau.
The Southern Hills Community Bank served as host for the event this year, helping to plan the activities, coordinating publicity, contacting donors for the auction items and seeing to it that plenty of food and refreshments were on hand for the evening. Greenfield Rotarian Dana Daughtery, who works for the sponsoring bank, served as one of the emcees at the Greenfield event. In Greenfield the event kicked off with Wes Surritt and Eric Zint serving as emcees, and soon they were joined by HCSCA Executive Secretary Patty Day, who explained the many ways that Highland Countians receive help through the society.
Entertainment was provided by cast members of “Mama Mia,” which will be presented soon at MHS, as well as singer Dusty Barrett and dancers from the Modern Movement Dance Company. Various Rotarians served as emcees or answered phones throughout the evening.
The Hillsboro event was similar to past years with many in-person donations presented and various items being auctioned, including sports memorabilia, tickets to events and travel opportunities. Rick Williams and Herb Day served as moderators for the evening at the Hillsboro Orpheum.
As he has done many times in the past, Rotarian Rocky Coss was instrumental in the planning of the event, conducting several Zoom meetings with committee members and Rotary club representatives.
The Greenfield club expressed thanks to the McClain High School for allowing use of the facilities, to Drew Hamilton and his staff for broadcasting the event, to Pat Hays and Nelson Hunter of WVNU for providing updates on the radio, and to everyone who contributed pizza, cold cuts, cookies and soft drinks for the telethon. Also a big thank you to Miss Loretta Flora and her “Mama Mia” cast, to Dusty Barrett and to the Modern Movement Dance Company for providing the excellent entertainment. The Rotary clubs and the Society for Children and Adults are grateful to the many donors who helped make the evening a success. Donations can be dropped off at any bank in Highland County. There is also a “Donate Online” button at the society’s website, www.hicoso.org where donations can be made at any time.