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Volunteers care for community

July 20, 1997

By SAMANTHA KRULEWITZ

Staff Writer

Volunteers from Hagerstown businesses and organizations showed their affection for the community Saturday by participating in the United Way Day of Caring.

Their turquoise shirts were a beacon to those organizations' sites that the 125 to 150 volunteers helped refurbish, landscape, paint and wallpaper.

The event's corporate sponsor was Citicorp, which donated up to $10,000 for improvement materials and tools. Callas Contractors Inc, Crown Paint Inc., Neikirk WM M Inc, Steffey & Findlay Inc. and Lovell's Nursery Inc donated goods and services for the event.

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Chairwoman Anna Pennesi said the eight agencies targeted were the American Red Cross on Prospect Street, the Commission on Aging on the Public Square, "W" House on East Antietam Street, Catholic Charities on North Potomac Street, Girl Scouts on North Potomac Street, Parent Child Center on West Washington Street, Girls Incorporated of Washington County on Washington Avenue and the United Way on Potomac Avenue.

"The event was successful. It is a great example of how volunteerism can improve the community," she said. "I have been doing this for the past four years, but we took a different approach this year. We usually did only one project. We took the multi-event idea from Berkeley County."

She said they asked 25 organizations for a wish list of things that needed to be done. This year those eight organizations responded.

"We hope the event will grow every year when people see how they can help," she said.

The planning for the event began in April by a committee involving Detective Carroll Braun of the City of Hagerstown Police Department, J.R. Huntsberry of Callas Contractors Inc, Patsy Campbell of Girl Scouts, Jacklyn Wenerd of Citicorp, Cynthia Oates of Independent Cement Corp, Jan Coffey, Dennis Kelly and Bob Blasetti of United Parcel Service and Maureen Theriault and Micki Schrieder of United Way.

As a reward for all their hard work, the volunteers received breakfast and when they finished working, a disc jockey from Phantom Shadow Entertainment Services entertained the hungry volunteers before lunch.

One of 60 Independent Cement Corp volunteers, Marlene Nigh of Funkstown, said she's been volunteering at Day of Caring for three years and it's a great opportunity for children. She brought her children, Brittany, 11, and Brandon, 13, to participate.

"It's a good way to give back to the community," Nigh said. "It's only once a year, and we enjoy doing it. I want my kids to know that you should give to other people that don't have what you have. It gives you a sense of pride."

Gary Batey, plant manager at ICC, supervised six teenagers at Catholic Charities. He said they were painting the children's playroom.

"They did a good job and had a feeling of accomplishment. We had a good time. It's the fourth year of the event, and we've done it every year," he said. "It's especially good for the kids. I try to get our employees and their families more involved with the community."

Pennesi said everything was very organized and went well.

"It's been a really good event and a lot of people were having fun this year," she said. "Everybody was so generous. If they didn't donate their services, they gave them at large discounts."

Burger King, Citicorp Canteen Food Services, Dave's Produce, Dunkin Donuts, Green Spring Water Co., Johnnie's Restaurant and Hotel Services, Kerch's Ribs and Chicken, Martin's Potato Chips and Pepsi-Cola donated food and drinks for the event.

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