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Ecumen Detroit Lakes Emmanuel Foundation Charity Benefit is designed to raise money for health-related amenities residents can enjoy. This year, a new wellness center will be among those added benefits. SUBMITTED PHOTO

‘Cheers’ to 50 years: Ecumen-Emmanuel holds fundraiser

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Cheers — it’s time to raise a toast for the annual Ecumen Detroit Lakes Emmanuel Foundation Charity Benefit.

“We’re calling the event ‘Cheers — 50-50-50’ because we are gearing up to celebrate our 50th year of service to this community,” said Sandy Lia, fund development director for the organization. “And because we’re also offered a $50,000 matching grant by the Otto Bremer Foundation,” she added.

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The fundraiser is set for Friday, Jan. 24, in the Holiday Inn on the Lake, with a 5:30 p.m. social and followed by dinner and dance at 7.

Traditionally a dressy event, Lia says roughly 200 attendees now enjoy themselves in a more casual atmosphere that she says ends up being “a lot of fun.”

“We have a great sit down meal, we have a silent auction, and we usually do a heads and tails game where people can win money by playing a quick little fun game that everyone plays there,” said Lia.

Rock Star Productions will be providing the music for the evening.

“We get a lot of people coming back year after year, because believe you me, if people come once, they almost always come again,” said Lia. “It’s that fun.”

The event is designed to raise funds for specific projects that enhance life for elderly residents at the different Ecumen-DL living facilities.

Last year the money went to install therapeutic equipment and large beds for the residents, while this year’s funds raised will go to help in the massive building project that is currently underway.

This encompasses such things as a new wellness center, new short stay and rehabilitation center, additional services, private rooms and private showers for residents and a therapeutic pool.

“And that’s going to be huge because I don’t know if there’s another one like that in this whole region,” said Lia, who says the health benefits of the pool and other list of new amenities are designed to keep residents healthy in body, mind and spirit.

“We are going to have such a beautiful structure when it’s completed in the fall,” said Lia, who says they are also excited to get in more wellness classes for residents like yoga, acupressure and tai chi.

Lia says it’s support from the community and Otto Bremer Foundation that will make all of this possible.

Tickets for the Cheers — 50-50-50 fundraiser can be purchased at Ecumen and often times at the door.

“We like to sell them in advance, but try to be able to have some at the door,” said Lia, who warns that there has been a year that they’ve sold out.

Tickets are $50 per person; a table of eight is $450.

There are also different levels of sponsorships available for donors, including a bronze for $300, silver for $500 (includes two tickets), gold for $1,000 (includes four tickets), platinum for $2,500 (includes six tickets) and diamond for $5,000 (includes eight reserved seating and complimentary beverages).

For more information on the event or to purchase tickets, call Sandy Lia at 844-8340.

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