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For the record

October 16, 2005

On Saturday, Oct. 1, practically the whole hamlet of Gerrardstown, W.Va., turned out to welcome several hundred visitors to the Red Cross Fair organized by the Corner Store. The event raised more than $5,000 for the American Red Cross, an impressive feat considering that there are hardly a hundred houses in the town.

A stage with a P.A. system was set up on a large flatbed on the grass, with hay bales for seats. There was a live music program featuring Traditions, Inner Harbor, Ebenezer Mountain Calvary, Instruments of Praise, Kenny Johnson Gospel Music, Steve Pyle Family Southern Gospel, Three Generations Blue Grass and Southern Gospel. These groups performed throughout the day.

The live program was kicked off by Miss Liberty and Uncle Sam in full costume, also known as Belinda Hughes and Eric Weber, owners of the Corner Store and the orchestrators of the day's events.

All food and drink was donated by suppliers. A team of ladies made cakes, cookies, pies and other delicacies for sale. An apple vendor donated her entire day's sales of about $300. Firefighters raised an equal amount for a few hours' work. Berkeley County Police volunteered to supervise traffic. The owners of Triple J Pony Pals from Berryville, Va., donated their ponies for the day, and personally walked with them without taking a break until late afternoon, creating a memorable new adventure for a number of small children who had never been on a horse. They also enjoyed feeding kid goats at the "petting zoo" and jumping on the moon bounce donated by Great Inflates Rentals.

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The full-grown "children" got to toss a ball to dunk their favorite victim into a tank of cold water. Mountain Blessings Antiques and Ye Olde Country Cupboard were open, with another house full of antiques and old stuff spilling out in the yard. Several vendors in the Methodist Church yard did a fine business, giving both a donation and a percent of their sales to the fund. Raffles of prizes donated by local businesses were drawn every hour. Even the portable toilets were donated. Long and Foster Realtors donated $600 as a startup fund and local real estate agents including Sonny Brown, Mary Ellen Mahoney and Brian Masemer contributed also.

One good citizen came in the Corner Store with a $500 check made out to the Red Cross. Many others also contributed generous amounts.

Hagerstown Business College recently presented Sharon Gladfelter, RHIT, the Award of Excellence and therefore named her as a member of the Kaplan Higher Education Alumni Hall of Fame. This award was established to recognize graduates of a Kaplan institution who have been uniquely successful with their careers as well as in the community. Recipients of the award are selected based on their career success and community involvement.

Gladfelter, a 1964 graduate of Hagerstown Business College, began her career at Brook Lane, a mental health care facility, two weeks after graduating from the medical secretary program. She started working as the secretary to the medical director at the facility. Seeing an opportunity in the field of medical records, she continued her training through the American Health Information Management Association and become a Registered Health Information Technician. Today, she is the Director of Health Information at Brook Lane. Although work keeps her busy, Gladfelter is also involved with local church activities.

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