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Friday, June 22, 2012

Bethel AME Fundraiser: Fun Fun for the Tum-Tum!

Diets went out the window on Saturday morning, June 16, 2012, but it was for a good cause.

Congregation members of the Bethel A.M.E. Zion Church in Riverview held a fundraiser that morning, that tested the taste palates of the most determined dieters.

"The pancake breakfast was one of the events our team, one of the Bethel 75th Anniversary Teams, did for a fundraiser," says organizer and church member Sissy Graves. "We're raising money on this anniversary to help pay off our mortgage."

To see a slideshow of the Bethel AME Zion Pancake Fundraiser, please click here.

Friends, parishioners and church members feasted on pancakes, sausages, and coffee or soft drinks, with tickets selling for 5 dollars apiece. The event was held at Applebee's on Stone Drive at Eastman Road in Kingsport.

"I'm so excited at how things went," says Ms. Graves. "I would have like to have done more, but not everybody is a big pancake eater. A lot of people didn't come to eat pancakes.. they stopped by just to give us a monetary donation, which we appreciated."

"The New Vision Youth came to help us," she says, "and we were so tickled to have them. They took signs outside and held them out on the street, so that travelers could see them. My Bethel family came and supported us, and some of the other churches supported us, too, and I was so happy for that. It's a wonderful community when members of other churches come by and remember the family that we all are."

The pancake breakfast was one of several different fundraisers undertaken by the Bethel congregation.

"We've raised money from the sale of tee-shirts, raffle tickets to win a basket," says Ms. Graves. "Different color groups have done different things.. my color group is Green and White. There's a Gold and Black team, a Red and White team, and we're Green and White. Our committee members are Deborah Arnett, Sandra Wilmer, Aaron Hutchenson, Wendy Smith, my two daughters Tiana and Shana Graves, Gail Arnett and others. The other teams are responsible for raising money through other fundraisers assigned to them."

The pancake breakfast was busy all morning, but towards the end at 10 A.M., business REALLY picked up.

"Of course, everybody stopped by when it was time to go home," Ms. Graves remembered, using the situation to chide the community a little.

"We had a bunch of people on that C.P. time, you know," she laughed, "so we had to work a little extra for them."