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Polite company benefits Habitat for Humanity

November 16, 2008|By ALICIA NOTARIANNI

CLEAR SPRING - It was an afternoon of leisure and decorum.

Women donned white gloves, high heels and hats, and nattered while nibbling scones and sipping tea. Polite young girls in party dresses presented dainty desserts on silver trays.

While the scene resembled one from a Merchant Ivory film, it took place Saturday in the basement of St. Paul's Reformed Church in Clear Spring. High Tea was the church missions committee fundraiser to benefit Habitat for Humanity of Washington County.

Donna Mongan of Clear Spring was chairwoman of the committee. Mongan said the group received an informational letter from Habitat for Humanity and decided to try to raise some money for the group. During discussions, Clear Spring resident and committee member Margaret Cornett suggested sponsoring a tea fundraiser.

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"A lot of people have teas in the area. I though it would be a neat way to make some money for Habitat for Humanity, which is a wonderful cause," Cornett said. "I thought it would be something we could handle."

Tickets for the event cost $10 and covered soup, sandwiches, tea breads, 20 scones, dessert, fruit and unlimited tea. In order to provide comfortable seating and quality service, Mongan said the committee agreed to limit ticket sales to 40. The event generated interest and the committee agreed to sell "a few more," Mongan said. The mission committee expects to give Habitat a check for more than $450.

"We wanted to contribute to a local charity," Mongan said. "One thing the church should do is reach out to others."

Megan and Marci Drury of Alexandria, Va., celebrated their 25th birthday at the fundraiser with their mother, Glenda Drury, 52, of Hagerstown, and their two aunts.

Megan sported a purple Victorian hat, while Marci wore a feathered design in brown to coordinate with her dress.

"We wanted to celebrate our birthday at a tea. We get to wear hats, sundresses and gloves. We thought it would be fun," Megan Drury said.

Mary Fiery of Clear Spring said Cornett told her about the tea party. Fiery invited members of her Red Hat Society chapter, as well as some other friends.

"It's delightful being here," Fiery said.

Renee Rudolph of Hagerstown had tea with her daughter and her three aunts. Rudolph said her daughter, Jenna, 7, asked about Habitat for Humanity and what it does. Rudolph explained that Habitat builds houses for people who do not have them.

"Nobody should not have a home," Jenna said.

Habitat for Humanity volunteer Eileen Beck attended the event with two fellow volunteers.

"We are thrilled," Beck said. "It's been a lovely, lovely day."

Cornett said she was pleased with the cooperative effort of church members who provided assistance and supplies, as well as with the response from the community.

"We're going to do this again," Cornett said.

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