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Around Florence: Charity yard sale generates $800 for Humane Society, Survival Center (with correction)

  • FRAN RYAN<br/><br/>The Heritage Pops Orchestra performs Aug. 31 at Millside Park in Easthampton as part of the Arts in the Park series. See listing.

    FRAN RYAN

    The Heritage Pops Orchestra performs Aug. 31 at Millside Park in Easthampton as part of the Arts in the Park series. See listing.

  • Acoustic Brew is lined up to play its GCPSBrewgrass,GCY= a bluegrass-infused blend of original compositions, traditional songs, and old school country and blues Aug. 30 at the Angel Park music series.

    Acoustic Brew is lined up to play its GCPSBrewgrass,GCY= a bluegrass-infused blend of original compositions, traditional songs, and old school country and blues Aug. 30 at the Angel Park music series.

  • FRAN RYAN<br/><br/>The Heritage Pops Orchestra performs Aug. 31 at Millside Park in Easthampton as part of the Arts in the Park series. See listing.
  • Acoustic Brew is lined up to play its GCPSBrewgrass,GCY= a bluegrass-infused blend of original compositions, traditional songs, and old school country and blues Aug. 30 at the Angel Park music series.

If you couldn’t find it at Betty Wolfson’s charity yard sale in Florecne earlier this month, you probably didn’t need it.

The sale, which Wolfson said she hopes to make an annual event based on its success, attracted a couple of hundred people and raised about $800 that will be split between the Dakin Pioneer Valley Humane Society and Northampton Survival Center.*

Wolfson put out a call for donations and by July 12, her wrap-around porch was filled with items for sale.

“We literally had everything including a kitchen sink,” Wolfson said.

Wolfson’s idea was to allow people to name their own prices on items at the sale, figuring people may pay a little more if they knew the money was being donated to charity.

Shoppers then cast votes for area organizations they would like to see receive the proceeds.

Wolfson said Dakin and the survival center received almost equal numbers of votes, so she chose to split the money.

“People felt really good to be a part of it,” Wolfson said. “Whether donators or purchasers.”

“It just felt good to be doing something where the outcome was going to be community building,” she said.

The sale had been scheduled for Saturday but was moved to Sunday, July 14, due to weather.

Because the sale was such a hit and raised much more than she had expected (Wolfson thought $500 would be the most she could collect from the sale) she’s already planning on doing it again next year, probably in the spring.

She said local organizations that may want to increase their chances of being awarded next year’s donations can solicit donations or encourage volunteers to help at the sale on their behalf.

“We’re looking forward to it already,” Wolfson said.

•••

Church group supports
Habitat house

The Greater Northampton Cooperative Vacation Bible School is raising money to help construct a new house on Garfield Street in Florence.

The school is sponsored by the Florence Congregational Church and the money raised will be donated to Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity, which is building the home.

Stephanie Flinker and Brenda Gammon, co-directors of the Bible school program, said in a statement, “We liked the idea of standing strong in our own community, especially after the (bombing) in Boston.”

The camp is open to area children ages 4 to 17. No one is required to belong to a church to attend.

According to the camp, organizations that have benefitted from its work include the Northampton Survival Center, Grace House of Northampton, Cooley Dickinson Hospital’s Cooley Cares for Kids, Berkshire Children and Families, Safe Passage, the Springfield Rescue Mission backpack program, the Westfield Homeless Cat Project and the Westfield Regional Animal Shelter.

More information about the camp is available at the church’s website, fccnorthampton.org or by calling 413-584-1325.

•••

Music on the porch

There’s still plenty of summer left, and Florence celebrates weekly with the Music on the Porch series, which continues through Aug. 29.

The shows are scheduled at 6:30 p.m. Thursdays at the Florence Civic Center. Admission is free and people can bring blankets and chairs.

The remaining scheduled shows are:

■ July 25: Heritage Pops Orchestra.

■ Aug. 1: Acoustic Brew.

■ Aug. 8: Campfire Night with the Bum Steers.

■ Aug. 15: Bad News Jazz and Blues Orchestra.

■ Aug. 22: Heather Maloney.

■ Aug. 29: Lonesome Brothers.

* CORRECTED: This story has been corrected from its original version to reflect that the Northampton Survival Center and Dakin Pioneer Valley Humane Society received proceeds from the yard cale.

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