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March of Dimes March for babies set for Saturday

By Staff | May 15, 2012

Morgan’s Grove Park will be the site for the annual March of Dimes March for Babies. Chaired by Karissa Horowicz, the event hopes to raise funds and awareness for the one in seven babies in West Virginia born premature this year.

The March for Babies, the March of Dimes largest fundraiser, helps fund essential lifesaving research and educational programs.

“We wanted to double the number of teams from last year,” said Horowicz. Last year in Jefferson County more than $24,000 was raised. This year the board has committed to $6,000 in new revenue with an overall goal of $30,000. Horowicz added, “I was pleasantly surprised to learn that 77 percent of money raised in West Virginia goes back to our state to fund programs and grants.”

“We are fortunate to have Kerry Asam, Whitney Rinker, Brandon Braithwaite, Kim Himes, Chrissi Froyer and Diane Creason serving on the committee and share their enthusiasm and commitment to this important cause but we cannot do this without the support of the community. Each of us will be contacting and personally visiting local businesses, schools, churches and community organizations to request their support in the coming weeks.” said Horowicz. “West Virginia ranked a grade “D” on the National Prematurity Report Card.

“That is just not acceptable. This campaign gives me the unique opportunity to work with the members of our community to ensure that Jefferson County families have the resources available to them for a strong healthy pregnancy.”

Events planned for this year include a moon bounce from A Bouncin Party, face painting by Swirly Curls, Susie the Clown, Miss West Virginia, Spenser Wempe will be in attendance along with Miss Jefferson County Outstanding Teen, Lexi Openshaw and Miss Shenandoah County Outstanding Teen, Morgan Breeden. Citizens Fire Company will be participating and bringing Sparky the Fire Dog. Allstar Legacy will be demonstrating a dance routine, David McMasters Photography will be taking team pictures and thanks to Skinner Law Firm an IPod will be given away to one lucky kid.

“We’re so excited to have Karissa on board to help us at a local level,” said Michelle Coffey, community director for the March of Dimes Chapter. “Her passion for the cause and commitment to helping our babies will be a huge driving factor in the success of our event. We are grateful for her commitment as well as all of our hardworking committee members. I am the only March of Dimes employee in the Eastern Panhandle and I rely heavily on my committee and volunteers. These ladies are working hard and I could not be more proud.”

The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide and its premier event, March for Babies the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.

For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.com or nacersano.org.

March for Babies is sponsored nationally by the March of Dimes number one corporate supporter Kmart, Farmers Insurance Group, Cigna, Famous Footwear, Sanofi Pasteur, FedEx, Mission Pharmacal, Watson Pharmaceuticals, First Response, and United Airlines. Local sponsors are BB&T, Bank of Charles Town and Jefferson Memorial Hospital.