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Oysters a hit at Rotary fundraiser

February 24, 2013|By JULIE E. GREENE | julieg@herald-mail.com
  • Jenny Scriever, second from right, rolls a golf ball in the Pill Game Sunday afternoon during the Hagerstown Rotary Club's annual Bull & Oyster Roast at HCC's ARCC. John Latimer, left, runs the game. Watching are Wes Stine, Tina Smartt, and Kayla Hill.
By Joe Crocetta/Staff Photographer

Raw and fried, oysters were being gobbled up Sunday at the Rotary Club of Hagerstown’s ninth annual Bull & Oyster Roast.

Some people dipped their fried oysters in cocktail sauce, while others put a dollop of cocktail sauce or a shake of hot sauce on their raw oysters.

Hagerstown resident Tim Williams, 51, said he enjoys his oysters raw.

“My dad used to bring them up from Virginia when I was small,” said Williams, who attended the event with friends Wayne Lafferty and Scott Paddock.

The event in Hagerstown Community College’s Athletic, Recreation and Community Center also offered pit beef, sausage and fried chicken, but the oysters were the star.

For the third straight year, the Rotary club worked with the Oyster Recovery Partnership, event chairman David Hanlin said. Participants were asked to drop their oyster shells in specially marked bins so the shells could be recycled for use as oyster habitat, as a setting for spat, or oyster larvae.

The event helps raise money for the Rotary club’s charitable foundation. The foundation donated approximately $70,000 last year to various community nonprofit groups, Rotary President Chris Motz said.

For the first time, the event had sponsors who covered the cost of the food, Hanlin said. The major sponsors were Innovative Inc., Kaplan University, WPS Inc., Sharrett Automotive Group, HM Media, Sellgren Financial Group of Wells Fargo Advisors, and Spichers Appliances & Electronics, Hanlin said.

With the sponsors’ help, Hanlin was hoping the bull and oyster roast would rival the Rotary club’s golf fundraiser for the club’s biggest fundraiser.

The golf outing at Fountain Head Country Club raised about $32,000 last April, Hanlin said. Last year’s bull and oyster roast raised more than $16,000, he said.

Early during Sunday’s event, Hanlin said the club expected to sell almost 900 tickets to the bull and oyster roast. Tickets cost $40 to $50, depending on when they were purchased. Funds also were being raised through a raffle, tip jars and table games, Hanlin said.

About 110 volunteers helped run the event Sunday, Hanlin said.

Volunteer Stephanie Henneberger, whose husband, David, was the event’s food chairman, took a break to enjoy some raw oysters.

“I like my oysters cold with cocktail (sauce) and horseradish. And a lot of it,” she said.

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