Home­com­ing dance raises $30K for St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter

Sunday Star - - LIFE - By KATIE WIL­LIS kwillis@star­dem.com

ST. MICHAELS — Res­i­dents of St. Michaels and sup­port­ers of the St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter danced the night away Saturday, Aug. 26, at the St. Michaels Inn to raise funds for the com­mu­nity cen­ter’s pro­grams.

Tr­ish Payne, SMCC ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor, said the home­com­ing dance, “Danc­ing Through the Decades,” raised nearly $30,000 for the com­mu­nity cen­ter’s afters­chool pro­grams and the newly cre­ated Aunt Jean­nie’s Soup Kitchen.

Dur­ing the event, eight cou­ples, in­clud­ing Laura and Jason Chance; Crys­tal Foxwell and Der­rick Richard­son; Peter and Lucka Paris; Jen Shatwell and Jonathan “JD” Di­et­rich; Karen and Lan­g­ley Shook; St. Michaels Po­lice Chief An­thony Smith and his daugh­ter, A’knea Smith; Kathy Lash and Joe Trippi; and Shawn and Marissa Carter vied for the ti­tle of home­com­ing king and queen.

In or­der to win that ti­tle, the con­tes­tants had to com­mit them­selves to do­ing what­ever it took to rais­ing cash and in-kind do­na­tions for SMCC, which is now in its 26th year of serv­ing chil­dren, the el­derly and other neigh­bors through­out the Bay Hun­dred area.

Shatwell, who is a mem­ber of SMCC’s ad­vi­sory board and team, and Di­et­rich were crowned home­com­ing queen and king dur­ing the dance, with SMCC ad­vi­sory board Pres­i­dent Kathy Lash and her hus­band, Joe Trippi, com­ing in a close sec­ond, Payne said. Lash also or­ga­nized the Aug. 26 event.

Con­tes­tants Peter and Lucka Paris took home the award for best dressed of the evening. Sev­eral items also were raf­fled off dur­ing the event and a live auc­tion was held, as well. Live auc­tion items in­cluded tick­ets and park­ing for an Ori­oles and a Red­skins game; a one-week va­ca­tion rental in St. John, U.S. Vir­gin Is­lands; and a two-week va­ca­tion rental in Key West, Fla.

Payne said in ad­di­tion to rais­ing funds for the cen­ter’s fall af­ter-school pro­grams, which will run from the end of September through Novem­ber, the money raised also will go to­ward Aunt Jean­nie’s Soup Kitchen, which is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. ev­ery Friday at SMCC.

Jean­nie But­ler, the kitchen’s name­sake and head chef, grad­u­ated De­cem­ber 2016 with an ad­vanced culi­nary arts de­gree, magna cum laude, from Strat­ford Univer­sity. Her dreams of open­ing a soup kitchen in her home­town were re­al­ized when the kitchen launched at the end of July.

But­ler also teaches a “Cook­ing and Con­ver­sa­tion” class from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tues­days at the com­mu­nity cen­ter. The stu­dents, young women from fifth grade through high school, help to de­ter­mine what the soup kitchen menu will be each Friday. Those that can help pre­pare, set up, serve and clean up are given the op­por­tu­nity to take over those re­spon­si­bil­i­ties at the soup kitchen and learn about com­mu­nity ser­vice.

The soup kitchen is a do­na­tion­based com­mu­nity meal open to ever yone. Guests are not re­quired to pay, but do­na­tions are ac­cepted. There also is no tu­ition fee for the “Cook­ing and Con­ver­sa­tion” class. The fund­ing of the class and the soup kitchen is sup­ported by do­na­tions from lo­cal restau­rants, the Mary­land Food Bank and in­di­vid­ual do­na­tions, foun­da­tions, grants and the money raised from the home­com­ing dance

For more in­for­ma­tion, to do­nate fi­nan­cial sup­port to the com­mu­nity cen­ter, or to do­nate pa­per prod­ucts, food items or ef­forts to the soup kitchen, call SMCC at 410-745-6073 or send checks to SMCC at P.O. Box 354, St. Michaels, MD 21663, and note “Soup Kitchen” on the memo line.

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

Peter and Lucka Paris, con­tes­tants for the ti­tle of home­com­ing king and queen, took home the prize for best dressed of the evening.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

From left are A’knea Smith, Njielah Fru, Yasin Seay, St. Michaels Po­lice Chief An­thony Smith, and Aaron and Kath­leen Smith. Chief Smith and his daugh­ter, A’knea, com­peted against seven other cou­ples as con­tes­tants for home­com­ing king and queen.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

From left are Mat­tie Foun­tain, mem­ber of St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter’s ad­vi­sory board and team; Tr­ish Payne, SMCC ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor; and Jean­nie But­ler, cre­ator of Aunt Jean­nie’s Soup Kitchen at SMCC.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

From left are Home­com­ing Queen Jen Shatwell and Home­com­ing King Jonathan “JD” Di­et­rich who were crowned dur­ing the fundraiser event on Saturday, Aug. 26.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

Tr­ish Payne, St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor, cel­e­brates the com­mu­nity cen­ter with guests dur­ing the Aug. 26 Home­com­ing dance. The event raised nearly $30,000 for the com­mu­nity cen­ter’s af­ter-school pro­grams and the newly cre­ated Aunt Jean­nie’s Soup Kitchen.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

From left are Karen Moaney and Kathy Lash. Lash is the St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter’s ad­vi­sory board pres­i­dent and she or­ga­nized the Aug. 26 home­com­ing event.

PHOTO BY KATIE WIL­LIS

From left are Andy Miller and Jackie Kin­ney who at­tended the home­com­ing dance Saturday, Aug. 26, to raise money for St. Michaels Com­mu­nity Cen­ter. Guests were en­cour­aged to dress up in cos­tume for the event.

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