MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

June 25, 2013

Club turns chili, barbecue into help

— Success can be measured in many ways.

For the Exchange Club’s annual Chili and Barbecue Cook-off, you could say the event attracts many visitors to our city.

You could say the event provides a fun, family friendly event.

The best measure of success for the cook-off may be the number of people helped by the Exchange Club’s donations.

This year’s event allowed the club to distribute more than $30,000 in cook-off proceeds to six area programs, tornado relief, and to its coat and shoe program.

Outgoing club President Kim Maples said the club managed to raise the funds through the “generosity from the sponsors who gave that money.”

Many who competed in the cook-off, held April 13, also helped. Maples said many contestants donated their prize money back to the Exchange Club.

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Kids’ Space and the Education Foundation of Muskogee each received $7,000.

MONARCH, a substance abuse treatment facility for women, received a $2,000 donation. MONARCH will use the money to build a new play room at its halfway house.

The club also donated $1,000 to an Oklahoma disaster relief fund.

The club will use $5,000 for its annual shoe and coat fund. The club works with Hilldale and Muskogee Public School counselors to identify students needing shoes and coats.

Each of those are helped through the hard work and generosity of the Exchange Club and its sponsors.

Well done, Exchange Club.

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