Ascension Borgess-Lee Foundation tentatively plans to host annual fundraising events

DOWAGIAC — As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, a hospital foundation is hoping it will be able to host its annual events to continue to support the community’s hospital.

The Ascension Borgess-Lee Foundation is remaining optimistic that it will be able to host its ninth annual Wine and Beer Tasting event and its 16th annual golf outing. The Ascension Borgess-Lee Foundation, created in 1986, is the official fundraising avenue of the Ascension Borgess-Lee Hospital in Dowagiac.

“The events are still a go,” said Beth Cripe, analyst developer at the Ascension Borgess-Lee Foundation. “Plans are moving forward. We are taking things day by day, so anything could change.”

This year, funds raised from the golf outing and the wine and beer tasting event will be used for the renovation of the radiology department in the Women’s Health Center, Cripe said.

“This department provides a private and comfortable place for patients who are receiving ultrasounds, mammography and bone-density services,” Cripe said.

As of Wednesday, Cripe said the plan is still to host the Golf Outing on Friday, July 10 at Indian Lake Hills Golf Course, 55321 Brush Lake Road, Eau Claire.

Registration for the tournament is set to begin at 9 a.m. with a shot gun start at 10 a.m. The registration fee is $60 per golfer, which includes 18-holes of golf, a cart, lunch, and prizes. Tee sponsorships will also begin at $150.

Last year’s annual foundation wine and beer tasting event raised more than $33,000 for surgical suite upgrades and equipment.

Every year, the event showcases Michigan wineries and breweries, which will also be providing tastings, Cripe said.

This year’s event is tentatively set to take place on Saturday, Aug. 1 at Don and Vicary Blackmond’s Sesquicentennial Farm, 55317 Lake Road, Dowagiac.

Tickets cost $50 per person and include unlimited tastings, live entertainment, an event souvenir wine glass and hors d’oeuvres. The event is limited to 350 guests.

Cripe said the events annually hosted by the foundation are important because the foundation is a nonprofit, and funds raised go to the critical access hospital, Ascension Borgess-Lee Hospital.

“We depend on these funds from our donors,” Cripe said.

For those interested in continuing to support the hospital in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the hospital has also set up a donation site for personal protective equipment and monetary donations. The donations will be accepted at the registration desk at the High Street entrance, where donors can ask for Brian Hemenway. Supplies being accepted for donation include surgical masks, isolation masks, N-95 Masks, isolation gowns, surgical gowns, full length plastic face shields, three-fourths length plastic face shields and googles. Donations will be accepted from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily.

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