Forward to Fall!

The cold weather has been a bit slow in coming this year, and thus, I am anxiously awaiting cooler days that signal the twist from sunny summer fun into autumn friendly activities. My boys and I have already made a trek to Jonomac orchards (you HAVE to visit when the Honeycrisp apples are ready…) and sampled apples, caramel apples and cider donuts. The sweatshirts have come out of storage, and my husband and I are strategizing how to fit 14+ people into our home for a sit down turkey-day dinner. I am envisioning a series of card tables and creative seating – we’ll make it work. As long as there is space for the bird, smashed potatoes and assorted pies, we will be good to go.  I have not yet sampled a Pumpkin Latte, but have settled into baking glorious treats on the weekends, my fall hobby and an activity that takes me to a happy place.

As far as Kishwaukee United Way is concerned, we are heading into an event-focused season, as we host a series of Dine-Out days at local restaurant venues, help to spread the word about the DeKalb Elks Craft Fair (whose vendor fees support United Way), and gear up for our annual signature event, Taste. Traditionally, our November shindig has been called Taste of the Vine, but this year we are shaking things up with a bit of a re-brand and a new look and feel. Taste: Bottles & Brews will be Thursday, November 9th at St. Mary’s. We will feature not only wonderful wine selections but also craft beers and microbrew tastings. We think this will enhance an already great event, bringing not only connoisseurs of the fruits of vine but also heartfelt fans of hops & suds. We will feature the fabulous food samplings of Premier Catering (A shout out to Kate, our culinary creator!) and enjoy the sounds of Jazz in Progress. Guest can take a chance on our 50/50 raffle or make a Case for the Cause by participating in a drawing to win a half case of wine or a half case of microbrew beers.  Have we forgotten our glorious gift basket auction? I think not! Prizes are drifting in ready to be assembled into a silent auction extravaganza! Favorite eateries and events will be featured thanks to generous local businesses, and we will have artwork, sport tickets, experiences, and more! You won’t want to miss this pre-holiday shopping experience in support of our core community initiatives. (If you see me stalking a particular auction item, be nice — My birthday is on November 10th J)

Why do we spend hours designing tablescapes, soliciting sponsorship, selling raffle tickets, asking for auction prizes and decorating dozens of delightful items? Because it matters to people in our community who need help. The people who are hurting, hungry, and need a hand up, not a handout. We do it because our efforts contribute to our ability to support our partners – feeding seniors, caring for children, sheltering and sustaining those who are vulnerable. Our neighbors. Our friends. Someone who needs a bit of assistance so that they can stand tall and walk toward a better tomorrow. Is it a lot of work? Yep. Is it worth it? You bet. We are proud to host an event that brings joy to our guests AND makes a marked difference in our world. Join us! Call 815.756.7522 for tickets, and enjoy a glass of wine or beer, but more importantly, know that you are contributing toward positive community change. Yea, you!

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