Summer, 2016                                                                                                    

Issue 31 

Emily's Intro...
Greetings Loyal SFSF Supporters!
Oh, no, less than a month until The Ninth Annual SFSF Bash & Dash. Where does time go? School is out, but the real work begins. In between all the work that needs to be done for THE RACE, we are organizing golf outings; we are making plans for helping out at the Waterfront Wine Festival on June 25; working on the 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament on July 30, and planning and hosting the girls June and July family birthday parties. You can read about our plans and events in this newsletter, volunteer at, and attend all of them!  Yes, it is a very busy time. My "to-do" list is re-prioritized on a daily basis.
I am so grateful for those SFSF Board members and volunteers who step forward to get the job done. And to all those who bring fresh ideas to our event (see race article, see Starfish bracelets article, see Wine Tasting Event, see it all).  We couldn't, just couldn't do it without your commitment and dedication.  However, we still need additional workers, so please check the sign up links below to see if you can give us a few hours of your time.
But what we really do need, most of all, is for all our loyal supporters to register for the race and do some simple fundraising. If every registered runner raises just $100, we could not only meet, but exceed our $50,000 goal. Get your neighbors, friends, and family to register and fundraise for us. Our number of family grant requests continues to grow; it's simple: we can't give, if we don't get. In eight and a half years, we have given away more than $700,000 to fulfill our tri-fold mission. That amount pleases me and amazes me, but makes me realize how great the need is. Families of children diagnosed with pediatric brain cancer need our help; researchers need our money; SFSF needs you!
Sophie's first birthday, July 4, 2004 in Cincinnati, OH 
Sophie should be turning 13 this year! Wow, how excited she would be to enter her teens. I am sure she is organizing her thirteenth birthday in heaven right now, but I really wish that I were organizing it here on earth. I miss her more than you can imagine! As we said a long time ago, we are turning our sorrow and sadness into passion and purpose, and would love for you to share in both. I recently read a Facebook post from a mother who lost her daughter to DIPG. Her image was of all the DIPG victims standing at heaven's gate welcoming those who have fallen to the monster of cancer, but now are rejoicing with their Maker. That image inspires me to keep on, keeping on.
I could go on and on with my message, but the truth is: I have things to do, phone calls to make, shopping to finish, and a million other things on my mind, so I leave you with this simple request: If you can help in any way, please do; no task is too small --- bake some cookies--- together we can make a difference. Together we MUST make a difference!

Thank you again,
Emily Quayle
SFSF Board President
Sophie, Sarah, and Marie's Mommy 
Added attractions abound at SFSF Bash & Dash
One day, one week from today, June 17, the early registration for the Ninth Annual SFSF Bash & Dash closes.  And although participants may register after June 17, including the morning of the race, they will not be able to order an upgraded T-shirt, nor be guaranteed a basic race T-shirt (first-come, first-served), won't have much of an opportunity to fundraise and be eligible for a special drawing, and will pay an additional $5-$10 per registration.  SFSF encourages early registration, with hopes that registrants will raise additional funds by using the customizable fundraising page provided upon registration. To date, SFSF is at just 30% of its $50,000 goal.
With much gratitude, SFSF thanks FMU (Fit Me Up) owners and SFSF Board members, Amber and Paul Theodore, for being this year's major race sponsor.  With FMU's donation of $5,000, its very active fundraising (over $3,000 to date), and providing the new and improved obstacle course, plus the zig zag climbing wall, FMU more than merits major sponsorship honors and recognition.
Although many of the traditional kids' activities are returning again this year --- the cookie walk, the age-appropriate bounce houses, sidewalk chalk, sand box, face painting, 50 and 100 yd kids' dashes, cotton candy, and snow-cones, the newly-added attractions will provide a morning of fun activities.
Runners and walkers will notice a new start and finish arch, valued at $3000, and provided by James Moyer of Geico Insurance. The Geico gecko will send off and greet returnees, adding a new look to the eight-year, traditional balloon arch.
Also new this year will be "TapSnap" a photo booth, provided and donated by long-time SFSF supporter and former SFSF Board member, Mari Durbin, and her husband, Dan Durbin.  Offering a variety of clever and cute back drops and props, the photo booth is sure to capture some great race memories and fun.
Keeping with The Bash & Dash traditions will be the flower drop at The Quayles' home, the birthday cupcakes following the race, the 50-50 raffle, the Chinese raffle, the Silent Auction, the Awareness Tent, the Concession Stand, and the SFSF store, featuring newly-ordered SFSF signature items, including mugs, bags, Under Armour shirts and tanks.
Packet pickup will be Sunday, from 4-6pm, at Holy Spirit Church on Lear and Walkers Rds, the exact site of race parking on Monday, July 4th. In addition to race packets, participants may secure parking passes (for a $5.00 suggested donation) at Walker Road Park on race day, sign kids' waivers and obtain additional kids' wrist bands for non-runners/walkers for a donation, and purchase a special wrist band for unlimited attempts on the obstacle course with zig zag wall.
SFSF welcomes all to the Bash & Dash, and also welcomes the help of all race day volunteers, as well as bakers for our cookie walk.  To give a hand, visit the sign up sites via the links below, created by pro and repeat organizer, Tru Pace:

Bash and Dash Event Volunteers
Cookie Walk Volunteers 

Trenton High School Girls Soccer Kicks for Cancer
On April 20, 2015, a cool, but sunny early evening game, the THS Girls Soccer team kicked hard, strong, and long, beating the Gibraltar Carlson Marauders, 5-0, and raising a record amount for its annual charity soccer game, dividing the results of its fundraising campaign between SFSF and ChadTough. Each foundation received checks for $1142.50 and three, $50.00 Meijer gift cards. Both organizations are members of the DIPG Collaborative, which supports DIPG research. 
In addition to its very successful bottle drive the weekend of February 13-14, the girls also solicited donations from individuals and businesses, allowing for the two, generous donations.
Tammi Carr and Susie Miklaski representing ChadTough and SFSF. 
Susie Miklaski, Sophie's grandmother, and Tammi Carr, Chad's mother, were on hand to receive the donations from THS Coach Mike Hatfield. After the players and their significant guests were introduced on the field, both SFSF and ChadTough were recognized by the announcer. The organizations were also featured in the game program.
The Charity Soccer game is an annual event, and SFSF greatly appreciates being the benefactor of this year's endeavor. SFSF thanks THS, the Women's Soccer Booster Club, Bill Wilson, Booster Board officer, Coach Hatfield, and, of course, the members of the girls soccer teams for their united effort and wishes them many years of wins and success! 
Golfing will be sweet at Sweetbriar
The Fifth Annual SFSF Ohio Golf Outing on Saturday, July 23, 2016, moved from its usual first-Saturday in June date due to a conflict in schedules; hopefully, the later date will give SFSF supporters an opportunity to perfect their game. And good thing it wasn't the first Saturday as the wind and rains in Avon Lake would have put a damper on the event.
Held at Sweetbriar Golf Club in Avon Lake on Legacy 18 --- the front and back nine of Legacy --- offering two differing landscapes, the $125-fee-per-golfer outing includes green fees, cart, lunch, dinner, and beverages. Registration and lunch precedes the 1:00 pm shotgun start; dinner and awards begin at 6:30pm. (Visit the OH Golf Outing webpage to register and/or contact Marc Quayle at 513.260.0649 or Mike Bova at 440.476.1611 for more information.) Any non-golfers who would like to join in the festivities may join the group for dinner, drinks, and fellowship for $35.00 per person.
With a commitment of 25 foursomes, SFSF continues to have openings for additional players. Go FORE it!
SFSF wins the big prize at Vendor Bingo
  The SFSF Vendor Bingo, held Wednesday, May 4, 2016, at The Stray Goose Grill & Tavern in Avon Lake, netted $1145 for SFSF. The $10.00 admission charge entitled participants to ten games of bingo; prizes were items from the more than 12 vendors in attendance, many of whom donated percentages of their sales from the evening as well. In addition to receiving all the admission fees, SFSF also held a 50-50 raffle; the winner, Kathy Butts, librarian at Eastview Elementary, donated back her winnings to SFSF.
The evening gave SFSF supporters time to shop the vendor's wares, socialize, and spend an evening with friends. SFSF thanks Kristen Van Euwen, Thirty-One consultant and former SFSF Board member, for organizing the event.


Racing towards freedom from
pediatric brain cancer!


KEEP Collective Makes a Difference
In conjunction with fundraising for the Ninth Annual Bash & Dash, Leslie Farmer, sister of Sophie's dad, Marc Quayle, is shooting for the stars with her "Starfish" fundraiser. As a designer for KEEP Collective, an online, at-home business venture, Leslie is hoping to sell 100 Starfish bracelets, with profits valued at $1550 to be donated to SFSF. This will be a combination of a cash donation as well as raffle and silent auction items that will be used at SFSF events to raise even more funds to fight for a cure for pediatric brain cancer!
The starfish bracelets, pictured below, promote an original "Chicken Soup for the Soul" entry about making a difference. The theme was also used in the 2011 SFSF Appeal. The idea, of course, is that little by little, we can all make a difference in this world.
The woven reversible bracelets, with starfish key, sell for $31, and come in two of Sophie's favorite colors, pink and yellow, and can easily be ordered online. To shop the fundraiser, simply click below for the preferred choice of bracelet. One will be automatically added to the shopper's cart.  By editing the cart, additional quantities may be purchased. A completed purchase requires a simple check out. The links for the two varieties are below.
To date $1250 has been raised; 78 bracelets have been sold. Join Leslie's Starfish Fundraiser FB group, where you can read more information about the fundraiser, be inspired by the many wrists of SFSF supporters sporting their new accessory, and follow along with the progress towards 100 bracelets sold. SFSF thanks Leslie for her unique fundraising idea, for promoting awareness, and for making a difference.  SFSF also thanks those who have supported the fundraiser and purchased a bracelet.
Waterfront Wine Festival To Benefit SFSF
SFSF will be the beneficiary of the Avon Lake Annual Waterfront Wine Festival, scheduled for Saturday, June 25, 2016, at the Veteran's Memorial Park, from 4 p.m. to sunset. Now in its fifth year, the festival features samplings from eight local wineries, food for purchase from Avon Lake restaurants, such as Parker's and Novotny's, music and art. The brainchild of Avon Lake Councilman and SFSF Board Member Dan Bucci, the evening showcases Avon Lake and provides attendees with an evening of food, drinks, entertainment, and relaxation.
Tickets are $20.00 each and entitle the ticket-holders to wine for tasting. Music appealing to several tastes will be the entertainment. Further information is available at the Avon Lake Waterfront website or by emailing Dan Bucci.  
In exchange for being named the event's beneficiary, SFSF will provide the worker bees for both set up and clean up.  Volunteers are encouraged to sign up for work times via this link. Volunteers under 21 are welcome for the set-up portion but 21 and over only for the clean-up portion. Please consider giving an hour or two of your time as there are still many slots to be filled and "many hands make light work!"
SFSF thanks Dan Bucci for securing SFSF as the event's beneficiary, and in advance, thanks those SFSF supporters who volunteer their hours of service.


SFSF grants approaching $715,000

Since March 2016, the Foundation has helped 24 families and awarded $24,000 in grant money, half of that coming from Jenna's Rainbow Foundation (see related article), bringing the total amount of family grants awarded to $541,253. The grand total donated by SFSF, including donations to The Cure Starts Now ($82,000) and St. Jude ($90,562), is $713,815.

Every month, the SFSF Grant Committee approves applications for financial assistance for families of children with brain cancer. However, at the end of 2015, SFSF had exceeded their family grants budget awarding over $100,000 in 2015 alone. As fundraising allowed, SFSF resumed awarding family grants in February 2016. The children of the families who received grants in April and May 2016 are:
  • Michelle, age 20 - medulloblastoma
  • Jeffery, age 9 - ependymoma
  • Nathan, age 19 - glioblastoma multiforme grade IV
  • Tea, age 4 - pilocytic astrocytoma
  • Autumn, age 9 - pilocytic astrocytoma
  • My'vel, age 5 - medulloblastoma
  • Gavin, age 10 - craniopharyngioma
  • Mason, age 14 - glioblastoma grade IV
  • Huxley, age 3 - DIPG
  • Charles, age 13 - astrocytoma
  • Carter, age 10 - anaplastic astrocytoma
  • Anonymous, age 17 - astrocytoma
  • Anonymous, age 9 months - astrocytoma
  • Anonymous, age 14 - anaplastic astrocytoma
  • Jaylean, age 15 - gliomatosis cerebri
  • Anonymous, age 12 - pilomyxoid astrocytoma
  • Gabriella, age 6 - DIPG
  • Connor, age 8 - passed away from a DIPG on May 17, 2016
  • Jordan, age 14 - medulloblastoma
  • Hiram, age 8 - ependymoma
  • Anonymous, age 15 - DIPG
  • Avery, age 10 - choroid plexus carcinoma
  • Xaevion, age 1 - anaplastic ganglioglioma
  • Davon'lea, age7 - medulloblastoma
In This Issue
SFSF and Jenna's Rainbow Connection
Jenna's Rainbow, a long-established 501(c)(3) foundation, dedicated to helping families with children diagnosed with cancer, has graciously offered to collaborate with SFSF's family grant program by matching, dollar for dollar, (up to $500 per grant) all SFSF family grants awarded throughout 2016, beginning with the April grants.
Founded in 1999, by Linda and Gideon Kamil after losing their seven-year-old daughter Jenna, after a two-year battle, to DIPG, in May of 1999, Jenna's Rainbow is dedicated to fulfilling Jenna's wish: (that) "the world would stay a rainbow."
It is this foundation's mission to fulfill Jenna's wish and "make the world a rainbow for children and families traveling the dark and often lonely road of battling brain and spinal cord tumors."
Seventeen years later, The Foundation's founders are proud of its accomplishments and its impact on the lives of children diagnosed with cancer.  As a means of sharing its work and finances with similar foundations, the Board of Directors began their search for a foundation which shared its passion and purpose.
It was the SFSF rainbow logo which led Jenna's Rainbow to SFSF. After contacting President Emily Quayle, the Board made its "rainbow connection," and decided to eliminate duplicating efforts and reduce the paperwork of its aging, volunteer Board of Directors.
With the increasing number of family grant applications, SFSF gratefully accepted the working relationship and financial assistance from Jenna's Rainbow. Last calendar year, by November, 2015, SFSF awarded $100,000 in family grants, and had to suspend taking applications until February of 2016.
This rainbow connection proved to be the answer for SFSF's increasing family grant requests, for reducing and simplifying the workload of Jenna's Rainbow, and most definitely, for meeting the needs of the number of families seeking assistance.
To date, Jenna's Rainbow has matched $7000, in SFSF family grants for the month of April, allowing both foundations to meet its mission. A request for another $5,000 for the month of May has been made. 
For additional information visit Jenna's Rainbow and read about the collaborative effort at SFSF.
SFSF graciously thanks Jenna's Rainbow for its generous offer and hopes to continue this joint effort in 2017.
Since a majority of these grass roots foundations are dedicated to funding cancer research, it is SFSF's wish that other organizations join forces by being contributing members of the family grant program. SFSF would hope that other "research-directed" organizations would consider making a "once-a year" birthday family grant, honoring its foundation's namesake, with proper recognition given to the supporting foundation, in a perfect way of spreading awareness.


Happy 13th Birthday, in Heaven, sweet Sophie!!


Registration Continues for SFSF 3 on 3 BB Tourney
SFSF will end the month of July with its Second Annual 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament on July 30, 2016, at Avon Lake High School.  The double-elimination event is open to both boys and girls in grades 4 through 8. Registration is currently open, and forms, detailed information, waivers, and tournament rules can be found on the SFSF website.
In its inaugural event, the tournament used only one gym; this year both gyms will be used, allowing for as many as 80 teams. The $100-per-four-man team registration fee includes a tournament T-shirt. Team members will be expected to wear matching T-shirts; Kayla's suggested colors are vibrant rainbow colors, promoting Sophie's rainbow.
Winners will be named in each category, with every team member receiving a medal.  Although team members may play "up a grade level," they may NOT play down a grade level.
The event will also feature a concession stand, with items for purchase, including pizza. Raffle tickets and new items from the SFSF Store, including Under Armour SFSF logo wear will be sold.
The event is the brainchild of Kayla Bucci, daughter of SFSF Board members, Andrea and Dan Bucci. SFSF thanks Kayla and her parents for their united effort in planning, organizing, and executing this second annual event. 
Remember, summer is about more than baseball, swimming, golf, and tennis; register today!
SFSF gets a cut of Kuts for Kids Fundraiser
2015 Kuts for Kids Fundraiser 

Nine-year-old Sarah Quayle, sister of Sophie Quayle, will be among the honorary hair cutters at the Second Annual Kuts for Kids Fundraiser, at Seitz Middle School in Riverview, Michigan, on June 15, 2016. Sarah, along with her grandmother, Susie Miklaski, who is a substitute teacher at both Seitz and Riverview Community High School (RCHS), were also on hand for last year's event. The duo represented SFSF.
Kuts for Kids was established by Seitz and RCHS teacher, Deb Meeks, last year after her husband, Kris Meeks, who is also a Seitz teacher, was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Kris is now cancer-free!
To date, 22 individuals will be donating eight or more inches of their tresses at an all-school assembly, just in time for summer vacation. Those going under the scissors are asked to get monetary pledges for their endeavor. Not only do the donors select in whose memory or honor they are cutting their hair, they may also choose their honorary hair-cutter. 
In addition to the pledges received, Kuts for KIds, the 35-member club at Seitz, (aka KREW) , sponsors the event and holds fundraisers throughout the year to fatten their coffers.  This year's major fundraiser was Finding Dory, a take-off on the Pixar movie which will be released to theaters on June 15, the day of the event. Students purchased snacks, some of which had stickers with the pictures of participating Riverview teachers. Those specially-labeled snacks enabled students to "FIND THE TEACHER," to collect special prizes.
Seitz Student Council, under the direction Seitz teacher, John Grahl, graciously donated the $1200 profits from their Teacher Auction, held in May, to Kuts for Kids. To date, the grass-roots club has $3200 in its treasury which will be divided among three groups: Children With Hair Loss, Smiles For Sophie Forever, and the Kuts For Kids Fund, which is used to provide Sunshine Baskets throughout the year to students battling a major illness or a "difficult time."
Highlighting the event will be guest speaker, Regina Villemure, founder of Children With Hair Loss, who also was in attendance at last year's event.
SFSF graciously thanks Deb Meeks, KREW, the hair donors, the hair cutters, and the monetary donors for making this event possible, and for having SFSF share in the profits.
This year, RCHS students joined the effort at Seitz. Just like human hair, Kuts For Kids continues to grow and grow.
In Sophie's memory...
Although not directly related to fundraising for SFSF, SFSF recognizes the efforts that SFSF supporters do and make in Sophie's memory.  These efforts are both noteworthy and touching.
Far from a hair raising event, but a real money-maker
Andrew's before and after at the event 
Sophie's second cousin, Andrew Kaczmarek, raised $1060 in Sophie's memory and honor by getting pledges for St. Baldrick's Foundation by agreeing to having his head shaved. The event was held at the Walled Lake Fire Station in Walled Lake, Michigan, on April 30, 2016. Andrew, a first-grader at Commerce Elementary School, was recruited for the shaving by his teacher at Commerce, and was joined by three adults and five other students in the clean shave. With the help and support of his parents, Jennifer and Carl Kaczmarek, Andrew received more than just a summer haircut on that cold day in April, he received the chance to honor Sophie and all other children diagnosed with cancer.
St. Baldrick's Foundation is a childhood cancer charity funding research to help find cures for children with cancer. The Foundation raises money for childhood cancer research primarily through head-shaving events. Volunteers, sponsored by family, friends and employers, shave their heads in solidarity with children who typically lose their hair during cancer treatment. Events have taken place in all 50 US states and 28 countries. Since 2000, St. Baldrick's
Andrew's support team: Back row: StepGrandpa  and Grandma Ray and Donna Tokarczyk, parents Jennifer and Carl Kaczmarek, brother Jack Kaczmarek, Grandpa and StepGrandma Cas and Arlene Kaczmarek; Front row: Great Aunts Toni Piotrasch and Susie Miklaski, Andrew and Grandpa Joe Szejda 
Foundation volunteers have organized nearly 4,200 head-shaving events and shaved over 190,500 heads, raising over $118 million for life-saving childhood cancer research.
By working closely with leading pediatric oncologists, the Foundation attempts to determine the most promising research to fund and create funding priorities to make the greatest impact for children with cancer.  
SFSF thanks Andrew for participating in the event, but especially for naming Sophie as his inspiration. SFSF thanks Andrew's extended family and friends for supporting Andrew in his endeavor. 
SFSF scholarship, nine years and running
For the ninth, consecutive year, Sophie's grandparents awarded a $1000 scholarship to a 2016 RCHS graduate. This year's recipient was Mattison Emery. The scholarship funded by Susie and Frank Miklaski honors Sophie and her love of books and learning, and is a "thank you" to the Riverview Community for the tremendous support given to Emily and Marc during Sophie's illness and for their continuous support to SFSF.
Mattison Emery and Susie Miklaski at the awards ceremony. 
Candidates for the scholarship, in addition to meeting basic requirements, must submit an essay explaining why they consider themselves worthy candidates.  Mattison's seventh-in-her-class ranking, her leadership positions and her involvement in service-related, extra-curricular activities at RCHS, and her leadership and involvement in RCHS sports were testaments of her worthiness of the scholarship, however, her essay comments were particularly poignant: "I want to honor Sophie's legacy.... I wish to live the opportunities that Sophie was not able to have and (to) treat every day like I was on a Disney Cruise. I want to live life to its fullest by making the world a kinder and more positive environment...."
Mattison plans to attend Michigan State University and major in elementary education.
Relay for Life
And Sophie was also remembered at the Riverview-Trenton Relay for Life, by the Seitz Girls Leadership Club (GLC) who participated in the event, and sold luminaries to raise money for The American Cancer Society. GLC, no stranger to SFSF fundraising, sold the bags and decorated them for the memorial walk at the event. In past years, Susie Miklaski spoke at the event which honors both the survivors and those who lost their battles with any of the dreaded forms of cancer. SFSF thanks GLC and their sponsors, Mrs. Bernadette Siem-Barnes and Mrs. Carole Vettrus for their charitable works, especially those done in Sophie's name and memory. 


God Bless America!




With thanks and recognition to...
  • AmazonSmile for $76.02 quarterly profits from SFSF AmazonSmile shoppers
  • iGive for May donation of $30.81 from various purchases by SFSF shoppers using the iGive button
  • Lorain County Women's Charity for its $175 donation to SFSF
  • United Way for the $120 contribution to SFSF


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