Oak Harbor Soroptimist mammography goal nears | Eileen Brown

I sat down with PEGGY WHITFORD, president elect, and SALLY MAYLOR, past president, of Soroptimist International of Oak Harbor, to ask how their fund raising is proceeding. Back in October, their organization pledged to raise $240,000 in a Digital Mammography Community Campaign.

The more word gets out, the more donations keep coming in. And there have been some surprises.

“We have received several $100 bill donations from Albertsons checkout counter jars,” said Whitford. Jar donations are up to nearly $2,000.

Just a few of the many organizations and businesses that have held fund raisers to support the cause are CARLA’S SHEAR INSPIRATION, WHIDBEY NEWS-TIMES subscription drive and the ST. AUGUSTINE Human Concerns Committee rummage sale.

ST. STEPHENS EPISCOPAL CHURCH gave over $700 from last Saturday’s Beachcomber Bazaar sale.

Individual donations of every amount are welcome, so don’t hesitate to give or find clever ways to raise money.

BEV ELVEBAK, a long-time resident and committed Soroptimist, gave $5,000 and the group received an anonymous donation of $15,000 in May.

Generous donations are planned, for example, by the Whidbey General Hospital Foundation which has pledged the proceeds of September’s Tour De Whidbey or $35,000. ISLAND THRIFT has pledged $20,000 and NOON ROTARY pledged $20,000.

Whitford and Maylor said their fundraising is modeled after the successful Rotary Stadium Campaign. They hope this sparks enough interest to get them invited to speak to local groups. Part of the presentation is a viewing of JIM RINEY’S powerful video with some familiar faces.

Donors can also be winners.

“GLORIA CAROTHERS of Jewelry Gallery is donating a Hearts on Fire diamond, valued at over $3,000, for which we are selling raffle tickets for $25,” said Maylor. If a person bought a couple of tickets every month until the Oct. 16 drawing at the Elks Lodge, there could be a sparkly surprise under the tree this year.

At their table at last weekend’s Beachcomber Bazaar, they sold $250 in raffle tickets. Buy some for yourself by stopping by Discount Party Store or calling any of the ladies listed below.

Early detection saves lives and digital mammography is able to detect problems earlier. Wouldn’t you want the best technology to spot a problem early in your mom, wife, daughter? And wouldn’t it be nice if they could do it right here in Oak Harbor and not have to wait weeks to have the exam done? Thank God for digital mammography. It is saving lives.

The women of SIOH and everyone who supports this cause deserves our thanks. Thank you for keeping families together, letting a girl grow up and pursue her dreams and allowing women business owners to keep their doors open. Our community is better because of you.

Checks may be made payable to SIOH and sent to P.O. Box 893, Oak Harbor, WA 98277. To reach Whitford, call 675-1449. To reach Maylor, call 720-2184. To reach Kathy Wagoner, also a chair of this project, call 675-3506. These women are determined to win.

Riggers set to race

Three tall ships are inviting the public to sign aboard to take part in the action, or just watch from their decks as a fleet of ships race from Port Angeles to Port Townsend July 1 on their way to Tall Ships Tacoma. The Lady Washington, the Hawaiian Chieftain and the Lynx will pick up passengers at 10 a.m. at the Port Angeles City Pier and cruise in company to the Northwest Maritime Center’s Port Townsend dock, arriving at approximately 6 p.m.

To reserve a berth for $150 on Lady Washington, Hawaiian Chieftain or Lynx, call 800-200-5239 or visit

Have a safe July 4 and I’ll be back next week. Call me at 675-6611 or email

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