EDWARDS – Busting Out the Brews has come and gone for another year.
The fundraising event for the Township of Osgoode Care Centre has become a tradition in the last seven years, drawing people from throughout the region.
There were 22 different vendors, including one cider maker, five wineries, eight breweries and eight food booths representing local food producers and restaurants.
More than 300 people attended and $60,000 was raised.
The event featured a live auction and silent auction with hundreds of donated items, including a dinner for 25 from Earl Stanley owner of Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm who has been hosting the event since its beginning. To win the four-course dinner all you had to do was buy a helium balloon and hope the dinner prize was inside it.
The Stone Face Sinners provided the entertainment for the evening.
The live auction portion of the event brought in $15,000 while the silent auction brought in another $6,500.
“Donations have been increasing over the years,” said Lori Norris-Dudley, the care centre’s president and CEO.
This year’s fundraising event is aimed at raising needed dollars to install an ultraviolet light system on the centre’s well and to begin renovation and expansion of the kitchen. The food preparation area was last renovated in the 1970s and the centre is expecting government funds to help them expand the facility with 28 more beds.
When first constructed, the kitchen area was designed for just 70 beds. When the total was increased by 30 the kitchen did not keep up.
The current water filtration system, meanwhile, is chlorine-based, which is very hard on the centre’s equipment such as water heaters.
Constantly making improvements to the care centre is a priority for the centre’s staff.
“We are always looking at the quality of our care. We want to make sure we can deliver the best care we can,” said Norris-Dudley.
John Bouza, the centre’s director of giving, said the facility is always moving forward.
“This past October we brought in $200,000 worth of mattresses and beds,” he noted.
Bouza said working with such a positive and dedicated board of directors at the care centre makes fundraising all that much easier.
Stanley meanwhile, believes the success of the annual fundraiser is due to its simplicity. He donated the cost of the hall for the event and said, “The care centre is so important and this is an easy way for the community to support it.”