~In This Issue~Oct/Nov 2014
Golden Gala Wrap-up
Adult Day Services Expands Offerings
GTMD Preview
Client Spotlight | Ben
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So Grateful! 
Clients at the North St. Paul program site are part
of the community fabric.
As we enter the last quarter of the year, we are grateful for our supporters who made this year's Golden Gala our biggest fundraiser to date. Read on for a full Gala Wrap-up, as well as info on the upcoming Give to Max Day, a story on the latest news and new community offering from Adult Day Services in North St. Paul and a client spotlight article on Ben. We can't think of a better season or a better reason to say, "Thank YOU!" 
Golden Gala 2014 exceeds expectations 

On Friday, October 10 at Prom Center in Oakdale, we celebrated "50 Years and 50 Shining Stars" at the 2014 Golden Gala with 412 guests, the most attendees ever! We are beyond thrilled to report it was our most successful fundraiser to date bringing in over $105,000 to support our mission of empowering adults with disabilities. 

The "A-Team" with Auctioneer Jim "JJ" Jorgenson pumping up the crowd to fund another year of Merrick's partnership with Dodge Nature Center.

Highlights from the event include:

  • Raffle Winners-New York City Trip Grand Prize: Connie Ostby; $500 Second Prize: Donna Hinrichs.
  • Champagne on Ice Wedding Day Diamond Winner: Melissa Zachman
  • All six crew members from the Dodge Nature Center "A-Team" and their support service staff Cora Ligday attended the event and went on stage during the "Fund-A-Crew" reverse auction doubling the fundraising goal to keep the partnership with Dodge active another year. A video produced by SharkBait Productions showcasing the work of not only the Dodge crew, but three other work crews debuted at the Gala. Watch the 5+ minute video in its entirety here. http://bit.ly/WorkCrewVideo
  • In recognition of Merrick's 50 years of empowering adults with disabilities, we honored 50 Shining Stars. To read the bios of all 50 Shining Stars who have made Merrick the premier provider we are today please click here: http://bit.ly/MerrickShiningStars. We will also be highlighting them, one per week every Friday on our Facebook page.
  • View photos (thank you James Ramsay of JamesRamsayPhotography.com and Steve Kjelland of KjellandPhoto.com for capturing the wonderful images!) here:  http://bit.ly/GoldenGala2014photos  
  • We thank all of our sponsors including Platinum Sponsor Target and Gold Sponsors: Mary Jo and Tom Holly, IPS Worldwide and Jackie & Pat O'Connell, SevenHills Benefit Partners, and the Family of Jean Bell.
ADS now offering adult day care to local community

Cathy loves to write letters to her family and friends. It's an activity she does on a weekly basis. An important part of that activity for Cathy is securing proper postage for her letters. Accompanied by a support service staff, Cathy walks from the Adult Day Service/Memory Care (ADS/MC) site in downtown North St. Paul to the local post office where the postal workers greet her by name as she eagerly chooses the stamp for her weekly mailing. Down the street at the local library Laurie Lynn looks through a pile of books specifically chosen for her by the librarian. These meaningful community connections are just what Training & Resource Director Colleen Timbers and Support Service Coordinator Paula Lindblom had in mind when the ADS/MC program opened its doors in North St. Paul a little over two years ago.

Laurie Lynn loves visiting the North St. Paul library. 

"As we are weaving ourselves into the fabric of the North St. Paul community, people are realizing there is more commonality than differences between themselves and the people we serve," said Colleen Timbers. "We are on the cusp, and looking to take it to the next level." That next level includes an expanded offering to those living in the area needing adult day care. 


In addition to serving current clients with developmental disabilities, the program is now offering adult day care for people with aging needs in a supported, safe, and engaged day program between the hours of 8 A.M.-2:30 P.M. and offers an affordable option to those looking for local and therapeutic care for their loved one.

The needs of each client are different, however the focus on arts, creativity, music, drama, and being part of the community are an integral part of the ADS/MC program. Along with the paid support staff, volunteers provide another level of care and connection. Sue Moyer, Volunteer Consultant, hired through grant funding has established volunteer partnership programs with Century College, Washington County, and the nonprofit Solid Ground. Volunteering runs both ways, as the program seeks volunteers, and the clients in the program also volunteer in the community. Crystal, a client who recently received her ten-year award from Merrick, volunteers weekly at the Maplewood Care Center, a perfect fit for her loving, giving, and outgoing personality.


This year's Give to the Max Day happening Thursday, November 13,  turns a spotlight on the ADS/MC program with funds sought to add a courtyard for the clients to enjoy during warmer weather. More info on GTMD is included in the next article below, or visit www.givemn.org/organization/Merrickinc to help us reach our GTMD goal.

The program is also seeking gently used musical instruments to add to their growing collection. If you have an instrument gathering dust in your closet, please consider dropping it off at the program site or contact Paula (contact info in last paragraph) to arrange a pick-up. Donations are tax-deductible.


If you are interested in volunteering, it can be as simple as stopping by to paint a client's nails, read a book, share your hobby, or as involved as local artists who come in and lead art therapy sessions. If you know of someone who might be a good fit for the new adult day care offering, contact Paula at  PaulaL@MerrickInc.org or 651-788-9107 to learn more

Give to the Max Day (GTMD) returns this week

Each year, generous supporters like you celebrate Give to the Max Day by making an online donation to Merrick, Inc., on GiveMN.org. Your generosity on this day makes a difference far beyond the 24-hour giving event.

Please join us on November 13, 2014, for Give to the Max Day and help us continue to positively impact clients at Merrick every day, by helping us build a courtyard at our North St. Paul site. With your help, we can provide a beautiful courtyard with benches, water features, entry from the building, and a fence for safety for clients to do craft projects, take music lessons, partake in horticulture therapy, or read with volunteers, under the protection of the majestic oak tree.


Your donation on Give to the Max Day also may help us receive an additional donation of $2,000. How? On November 13, every gift made on GiveMN.org will be entered into an hourly drawing for a $2,000 GiveMN Golden Ticket to be awarded to a nonprofit organization. That adds up to 24 opportunities for you to help us receive an extra $2,000!


Here's the really exciting part: At the end of Give to the Max Day, one donation made on GiveMN.org will be randomly selected to receive a $20,000 Super-Sized GiveMN Golden Ticket.

The more gifts we generate on GiveMN.org on November 13, the more our chances increase to receive that additional $20,000 donation. Imagine what we could do with $20,000!


Our goal is to raise $10,000 and you can help us reach it! You can even schedule your gift to Merrick right now by visiting www.givemn.org/organization/Merrickinc   

Client Spotlight | Ben | Adult Day Services/Memory Care

Ben is Irish through and through. His surname means "gracious defender"---and that he is--as Ben's eyes twinkle when he talks about his Irish heritage whether it is his coat of arms, folklore, traditions, songs, or the Dublin trip he took in his youth. It is not unusual for him to be wearing a Celtic T-Shirt, sweatshirt, caps, or pins. When he walks to the used bookstore in downtown North St. Paul, he most likely will bring back a book, CD, or DVD about Ireland. He is interested in playing the Bodhran, an Irish drum recently purchased for him to tap out his favorite Irish songs. 

He has been with Merrick for over 33 years and held positions at the Bubbling Kettle, Ground Round, and Pizza Hut. Currently, Ben is enrolled in Adult Day Services (ADS) located in North St. Paul. He spends his days going to the library, playing pool at Sidewinders, going to garage sales, Wii bowling, exercising, painting, going out for coffee, checking out the vintage cars parked outside the building on Fridays, and going on tours around the Twin Cities. 
On a weekly basis, he is involved in self-advocacy activities and loves to attend conferences and meet legislators at the Capitol. At 68 years of age, he exclaims many times during the day that he is happy that he is retired and he can enjoy this stage of his life. When not at ADS, he loves to spend time with his friend Kathie and her family, traveling, watching "The Rifleman," shopping, spending time at garage sales, and going to concerts. 
Ben enjoys Irish drumming. Music is an important part of the ADS/MC program. If you have an instrument to donate, please contact ADS Coordinator Paula Lindblom at PaulaL@MerrickInc.org or by phone at 651-788-9107.
Ben has a strong sense of volunteerism. At least once per month, he helps keep the grounds of the North St. Paul high school looking nice. Next year, he would like to volunteer as a greeter at the Irish Fair. Ben is also interested in helping at his church. He absolutely loves greeting and giving tours of the ADS program. He wears a name tag and proudly talks about the activities and goings-on of the program. His gift for gab and broad smile make newcomers feel welcomed. Ben is as much a part of ADS as ADS is a part of Ben's life. 

Get to know more clients at Merrick through the Client Spotlight feature on our website. Visit: http://www.merrickinc.org/client-spotlight.html  
Thank you to our recent donors! 

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Thank you for your continued support of Merrick, Inc.