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Holiday Festival to ring in start of Christmas

Posted 11/13/13 (Wed)

By Kate Ruggles
Farmer Staff Writer

McKenzie County Healthcare Systems (MCHS) has two auxiliaries, the Good Shepherd Home Auxiliary and the Hospital Auxiliary. They both work tirelessly, but separately, to raise money for MCHS.
This year, instead of the two auxiliaries running separate fundraisers throughout the year, they have decided to come together and host one big fundraiser for the hospital system. They are calling it a Holiday Festival and it will be held this Saturday, Nov. 16, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the McKenzie County Veterans Memorial Building.
“The hospital system is all together now, so we felt that we should work together, too, to raise money for the organization,” states Nancy Rolfsrud, of the Good Shepherd Home Auxiliary.
The MCHS Auxiliary’s Holiday Festival is geared toward family fun, according to Rolfsrud. The hope of both auxiliaries is that both old and new families will come and find something for everyone.
The two auxiliaries will feature a sampling of food from all over the world - Norwegian, German, Mexican, Filipino and Chinese, as well as American.
“The American food booth will be more of a meal, with roast beef or turkey sandwiches and sides, while the other food booths will be more of a sampling of different foods from around the world,” states Rolfsrud.
There will also be fall carnival-type activities going on for the kids, with pinata breaks every hour, according to Rolfsrud.
“There will be bingo for the youth and adults, as well as craft and vendor booths,” states Rolfsrud.
The big hope, though, other than people coming and enjoying themselves, is that people will come and buy baked goods and holiday items to help raise money for the healthcare system.
“There will be candy, cookies, other holiday items, and of course, lefse, for sale,” states Rolfsrud. “Our thinking was that, if people wanted to save themselves some work, they could buy their holiday items and baked goods here, freeze them, and then pull them out for the holidays.”
The MCHS Holiday Festival will replace the Good Shepherd Home Bazaar and the Fall Dinner that the Hospital Auxiliary has held yearly.
“We have the idea that we need a fall activity locally that all ages would enjoy,” states Rolfsrud. “We are also getting older, and it is hard to put on more than one fundraiser throughout the year.”
Rolfsrud states that the hope for both auxiliaries is that this one big fundraiser, the Holiday Festival, will be able to help fund the needs of the residents of the nursing home and patients at the hospital for the year, rather than both auxiliaries having their own fundraisers throughout the year.
“The money raised by both auxiliaries has gone to purchase flooring for the entry of the nursing home, chairs for the dining room, and flower beds in the front and back courtyards,” states Rolfsrud. “We have also shared in the expense of a walk-in tub, patio furniture, 12 high-low beds, and bedside tables.”
Rolfsrud states that both auxiliaries also help fund the activities for the Good Shepherd Home and the Horizon Assisted Living.
On top of that, the Hospital Auxiliary has helped provide two high-low exam tables at the clinic, and an extra-large wheelchair for use by both the hospital and clinic. They have paid for half of the expense for the hospital’s bathing tub and lift, along with helping to purchase a defibrillator, carpeting for the clinic, and an instrument set for the wellness center. Additionally, the Hospital Auxiliary helps to fund all the activities for the hospital swing bed patients.
The auxiliary groups have been a very important part of the history of the healthcare system for over 50 years.
The two auxiliaries are asking people to come and participate in the Holiday Festival, not just to have fun, but to help support the healthcare system. Rolfsrud states that the auxiliaries are encouraging anyone who cannot participate, or does not wish to purchase baked goods, to send a donation to one of the MCHS auxiliaries.