LETTER: The Lions Club — more than just the fair

Apr. 02, 2014 @ 04:59 AM

To the Editor:

For 79 years, the Sanford Lions Club has been an integral part of Sanford and Lee County. When people think of the Lions Club, they think of the Lee Regional Agricultural Fair. And rightfully so; it is a fall tradition and has been for generations.

But, the Sanford Lions Club is much more than just the fair. There are more than a dozen projects that the Sanford Lions either fully fund or assist in funding. Some of these include:

• This club year, local Lions have given approximately $15,000 to provide free eye exams and glasses for needy citizens.

• We help support Camp Dogwood, a vacation facility for the blind, and sponsor local participants each summer.

• Lions sponsor the attendance each fall of local blind citizens to the VIP Fishing Tournament on the coast and give gift certificates to the sight impaired at Christmas.

• Club members provide vision screening for more than 5,000 school children each year.

• Sponsor the N.C. Lions Vision Van here twice a year, providing free vision screening to all citizens.

• Help support the Lions Cottage at the Boys and Girls Home of N.C. at Lake Waccamaw, where abused, neglected and dependent children find a loving home.

• Funds three scholarships to local school graduates, plus scholarships to winners in the Miss Lee Regional Agricultural Fair contests.

• Contributes to a number of programs for the sight impaired, such as white canes, leader dogs, low vision instruments and medical school research.

In addition to the fair, where last year more than $30,000 in proceeds was awarded in prizes, Lions conduct other fundraisers. A new one is this Friday’s barbecued chicken plate sale. On May 31 will be the ninth annual Lions Golf Tournament at Quail Ridge Golf Course. After that, preparation for the 2014 Lee Regional Agricultural Fair begins with the sale of advertisements for publication of the fair catalog.

So the Sanford Lions Club is very busy this spring, but all the work and all of your support and contributions make possible all the programs listed above. And they in turn touch the lives and lift the spirits of many deserving people less fortunate than ourselves.

Richard Holshouser

President, Sanford Lions Club

Phil Gurkin

President-elect, Sanford Lions Club