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Published: Monday, 3/19/2007

Searching for the Pot O' Gold

Leprechauns were out in full force all over town on St. Patrick s Day, chasing that pot of gold, and more than one was found.

Necklaces made of green beads 2,200 of them were sold for a minimun donation of $1 at several Toledo-area sites and in Michigan for Sal s Pals, for children with cystic fibrosis. Sal, the son of Rick and Jenny Pinardo, was born in 2001 with the disease. The next dinner auction for Sal s Pals is April 21 at St. Francis de Sales High School, said Bree Reinhart and Andrea Slater, who were spotted selling for the cause in Mr. Beefy s in Perrysburg. By 9 p.m. they were sold out. The estimated net is more than $2,200, because several buyers donated more than $1 per necklace, said Nikki Bazzoli, necklace sales chairman.

Meanwhile, in Mr. Beefy s, which opened at 10 a.m., green beer and corned beef were popular, but it was John Connolly who drew a crowd of Irish wannabes with his group that played Irish tunes. With him was his daughter Kathleen, who mesmerized the crowd with her nightin-gaelic voice. The redhead said she is going to Nashville.

Megan Lokken holds her little leprechaun, her daughter Katie, at the Order of the Hibernian St. Patrick s Day Festival. Megan Lokken holds her little leprechaun, her daughter Katie, at the Order of the Hibernian St. Patrick s Day Festival.
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Among the green-bedecked lads and lassies enjoying the tunes were the Flynn clan and others, including Nancy Klewer, Larry Rice, and Steve Cotner, who stopped by before heading home to clean the garage on the sunny afternoon. Breen and Tara Lyden were tickled to be there because since they had toured Ireland with Mr. Connolly.

Getting in the jig of things was Pat Critch, there with Dorcey Hayes, Cindy and Brock Rimmelin, and a host of their friends. They all met there before going around town in a limo to Irish establishments.

THE Blarney was on the route for the Rimmelins and tons of others. At the entrance, green-beaded necklaces about 4,000 were sold for Make-A-Wish Foundation to grant wishes for children with life-threatening illnesses. What better day to donate to the cause than when leprechauns are out and wishes are especially potent. Coyote Run, all in kilts except the lone female drummer, who wore slacks, entertained the crowd with Celtic alternative tunes.

Eileen Kerner, Kathy Kology, and Anne Huebner, traveling buddies from Ireland, gathered for a reunion. Many folks watched the Ohio State-Xavier basketball game on TV, including the travel gals. Lynette and Dave Werning stopped by for a spell. Bagpipe player D.C. Gallaher, part of the Toledo Firefighters Pipes and Drums, paraded through the crowd in his kilt.

Popular beverages included Irish Car Bombs and other special concoctions. In a tent, corned beef and turkey sandwiches were served. Brian Epstein, who came for breakfast, said the eggs-and-hash all rolled up in a green pita was pretty good. Mo Devany was there too.

Stopping by in an Irish ambulance with a green flashing light were Bob Ransom, Jeff Haynes, and a host of friends.

ALL that partying. It was time for a break at Andre s Lounge, where corned beef and reuben sandwiches were the popular menu items for the day.

THE next stop was Mickey Finn s, where there was a $5 cover charge but for no apparent nonprofit organization. Seen were Julie Shanks and Alex Parks, Colette and Mark Jacobs, and Tom and Jane Manahan.

NOT too far away at Central High School was the 17th Annual Hibernian St. Patrick s Day Festival, where several guests and volunteers, including Shelly and Mike Crossley, had fun. The festival featured great foods and Irish dancers from the Heinzman School of Irish Dance. Live Irish and Scottish tunes included a traditional Irish session headed by members of the Irish group, Toraigh, with Mary Dennis, Bob Midden, and Martin Koop. They were joined on the stage, decorated with a U.S. flag and an Irish flag, by audience members who brought their musical instruments with them.

All smiles was Nick Fanelly, winner of the Ireland trip raffle. He bought the ticket from Madonna Pauken. Also smiling was Ann Dollman, who was given the Hibernian of the Year award. Event chairman was Tom McCabe.

ANOTHER pot of gold was found during the St. Patrick s Day Party presented by KeyBank for the Perrysburg Area Arts Council at Carranor Hunt and Polo Club. Festivities included traditional Irish and folk music by Toraigh, plenty o green beer, a 50/50 Irish sweepstakes, and a silent auction of glass art, pottery, sculpture, and paintings by local artists, including David Kolasky, Leonard Marty, Carol Gorney, and Tom Lingeman. Paula Baldoni was delighted to win Dan Boos painting.

Guests feasted on one of the tastiest Jiggs dinners around town, topped off with cooling green chocolate mint ice cream for dessert.

Seen were John and Elizabeth Emmert, Dick and Annette Sipp, Deb and Les Buker, Dwight and Judy Osterud, Bob and Jo McCullough, Dick and Marty Oakley, Jeff and Joy Studer, Doug and Ellen Moser, Marge Gallagher, and Ron and Marti Zollocco.

The board chairman is Pat Amico. Director Robin Ballmer said the evening focused on fun, but they netted $4,400 while they were at it.

GETTING a head start on celebrating St. Patrick s Day were guests at the Notre Dame Academy Pot O Gold Party Friday night at Toledo County Club. Shamrocks were everywhere along with rainbows and pots of gold.

Guests sipped as they nibbled on mini reubens and other delights. Then bagpipe player Andrew Bova, 18, of Perrysburg High School, led them to dinner, where they feasted on shooters of split pea and potato soups, and tenderloin and fish, followed by Bailey s Mousse in mini milkshake glasses for dessert.

Raffle prizes included a Las Vegas trip, a lucky charm bracelet and a diamond pendant, and a case each of Chateau St. Jean s Merlot and chardonnay.

And the best part is, the pot of gold exceeded $25,000 for the scholarship fund. That s thanks to the guests, sponsors, and everyone who donated, including Chuck and Jackie Sullivan, who gave a matching donation, said event chairman Pat Kuhr and board president Patti McNamara.

Among the group were Jordan and Mary Kay Urbanski, Phil and Mary Lou Rudolph, Harvey and Bea Popovich, Mary Ellen Pisanelli and Lou Tosi, Pat and Len Bullard, and Frank and Sandy Viviano.

CASHING in on another pot of gold was the Women Against MS luncheon, Dignity, Grace, and Fortitude, Thursday at Gladieux Meadows to benefit the Northwestern Ohio Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Chairman of the annual WAMS luncheon, Suzanne Carroll Witherell of the Jazz Brunch on 101.5 WRVF The River, is a treasure herself. She struggles with MS herself and strives to help others while supporting the search for a cure. Mrs. Witherell said that 200 people are diagnosed every week in this country with MS.

Echoing Mrs. Witherell s words was guest speaker, Cay Stout. Mrs. Stout, Mrs. Ohio 2006, knows what it is all about. Her husband, Doug, died of Lou Gehrig s Disease, another debilitating illness. So why at his time of need, did Mrs. Stout become Mrs. Ohio? Simple. To honor his legacy and to have a platform from which to advocate for people with disabilities.

Mrs. Stout was presented with a Key to the City byToledo First Lady Amy Finkbeiner. Commissioner Ben Konop proclaimed this month as National MS Month in Lucas County.

Board chairman Anita Voveris is all smiles because the event, which lured nearly 300 to attend, is expected to exceed last year s net of $20,000.



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