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East County Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2010 5 years ago

Ranch Key Club pitches tents for second Campout for a Cause

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by: Pam Eubanks Senior Editor

LAKEWOOD RANCH — East County youth will be able to camp out for the benefit of local and international charities during a special fundraising event this weekend.

Lakewood Ranch High School’s Key Club will host its Campout For a Cause fundraiser from 5:30 p.m., March 5, to 8:30 a.m., March 6, at Lakewood Ranch High School, 5500 Lakewood Ranch Blvd. The event will benefit six local charities, including one created by a Lakewood Ranch High School graduate.

Festivities will include a dodge ball competition, bounce houses, other games and competitions and karaoke, as well as live performances by bands such as Service With a Smile, Manhattan Roar, Day of Vengeance, Written in Red and Lion Choir.

Cost is $18 at the door, plus one item from participating charities’ wish lists, which can be found online. A parental chaperone is required per group of up to 10 campers under 18 years old. Participants should bring a tent and other camping gear if they wish to spend the night.

“The whole event is set up to get teenagers aware of their community and get them involved in their community,” event founder Mandy Kersey said. “Everybody has their soft spots. We want to help as many (charities) as possible.”

This year’s beneficiaries will be Taking Back Lives, To Write Love in Her Arms, SOLVE Maternity Home, Honor Sanctuary Animal Rescue, Community Haven for Adults and Children with Disabilities and the Food Bank of Manatee.

Each charity, except for Taking Back Lives, which will be awarded financial contributions, will be accepting donations from its wish list, which is given on the campout’s Web site, www.campoutforacause.com. An intake table will be set up at front so community members not participating in the event can still drop off donations.

Kersey, an English and special education teacher at Lakewood, said she and the Key Club students couldn’t be more excited to see things get under way.

“We’re basically doubling our efforts,” she said. “We have 12 bands. It’s going to be bigger and better than last year.”

This year’s camping activities will be set up in the school’s courtyard instead of at the bus loop to provide more protection for students.

“Plus, we thought it would be awesome to have it inside the school — almost like a lock-in environment,” she said.

Bands will be playing on two stages — both inside and outside — until midnight, at which time participants can head to the gymnasium for ultimate Frisbee, dodge ball and other activities.

Contact Pam Eubanks at peubanks@yourobserver.com.

Campout for a Cause
WHEN: 5:30 p.m., March 5, to 8:30 a.m., March 6
WHERE: Lakewood Ranch High School, 5500 Lakewood Ranch Blvd., Bradenton
BENEFICIARIES: Taking Back Lives, To Write Love in Her Arms, SOLVE Maternity Home, Honor Sanctuary Animal Rescue, Community Haven for Adults and Children with Disabilities and the Food Bank of Manatee.
SUPPLIES: Tent, camping gear and a wish list item for your charity of choice
COST: $18 per person, plus one item from the wish list of participating charities. The list is online. There is no charge for chaperones.
WEB SITE: www.campoutforacause.com

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