WHEELING, WV –Little did Lori Jones, Executive Director for the YWCA Wheeling, know when she opened an email (almost three years ago now) it would cause so much excitement in the city and elevate the exposure of the YWCA Wheeling and the programs currently helping women, men and children in the valley.
The email was from a company advertising their services to help raise money for non-profits and the idea was totally ridiculous; rappelling from rooftops! The more she read the more intrigued Jones was with the idea…so unique, so innovative, so cool. The hard part would be convincing the Board of Directors that it was a great idea and that it would work in Wheeling. So she took it to the Executive Committee and they loved the idea. Convincing 20 other Board Members was not so easy. Although, they like the idea, there were quite a few questions about: cost, liability, did we really think that we could convince people to pay $1,000 to walk down the face of the building?
Why yes, we did and as we enter our second year for the event, it has created the same buzz and excitement as last year and we have a few more community members willing to rappel. All willing to raise $1,000, to face their fear and walk the face of the Stone Center on a hot Saturday afternoon in August; one of the best this year is Susan Haddad, owner of Later Gator, who has a jar on the counter next to the register with a picture she cropped from a zip line tour-of her pasted on the front of a building asking to help send mamma over the edge.
There will be a few more costumes this year from participants. You may see Wonder Woman, Bat Girl, Cat Woman and a Spider or two. “I love the excitement and creativity this event has evoked. I really enjoy the opportunity to speak about the programs of the YWCA and let the community know how they can help with their time, talent and resources. It’s amazing how many people don’t know what we do or that we assisted over 5,400 people in the valley last year.
The event kicks off on WTRF noon news on Friday with Tate Blanchard going down and Chrissy Clutter from WTOV. Immediately following the news celebrities are the two front runners for the Wheeling Mayorial race Gene Fahey and Glenn Elliott, followed by the friendly completion of Lisa Allen, CEO of Ziegenfelders and Elizabeth Hoffreuter-Landini, Head of School for Wheeling Country Day.
The main event this Saturday, August 22, begins at 9am. A few more local Celebrities will rappel on Saturday with Delegate Shawn Fluharty, Betsy Bethel-McFarland, Wendy Scatterday (city council candidate) and Julia Balzano from Spinning Jenny. There are many more names on the list please go to: http://ywcawheeling.org/events/over-the-edge/edgy-edgers-for-2015/
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So, if you aren’t going to go over, please go to our website and help someone else go over by clicking on their name and make a donation towards their $1,000 goal, then come and watch and cheer on your friends and family as they rappel for the equality of women in the valley.
We are forever grateful to REDP, our building partner, for their gracious acceptance, patience and willingness to partner with us. The apartments being constructed in the Stone Center are going to be amazing and being managed by the WODA group.
Bill and Joyce Jones are going over as representatives of Stone and Thomas Department Stores. As the former CEO of Stones, Bill spent 24 years working in the building that we now rappel from, but as a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point he is used to facing adversity and overcoming obstacles. All talents he needed to manage the retail store and he will use again on Saturday when scaling the now Stone Center.
Join us as we go “Over the Edge” of the Stone Center (formerly Stone and Thomas) in Downtown Wheeling on August 22rd to raise money for the YWCA Wheeling.
Board President, Patti Kota exclaimed “This is a unique fundraiser for the Wheeling area and it’s very exciting! The community is given the opportunity to overcome their fear of heights, raise money for women and children, and the donations whether you pay for yourself or support someone else are completely tax deductible. The Board of the YWCA Wheeling is proud to offer this AWESOME opportunity to the community!” To go “Over the Edge” participants are required to raise at least $1,000 in pledges for a chance to take the 126-foot “walk” down the face of the downtown building.
The money will benefit the programs of the YWCA Wheeling and help further the mission of eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. The programs of the YWCA Wheeling assist more than 5,300 women and children each year.
“Over the Edge” is a company assisting non-profits around the world with rappelling fundraisers. “We are so happy to have REDP as our building partner for this event.” Said Kota adding “They, (REDP) are forward, progressive thinkers with a vision for Wheeling’s future and the YWCA is honored to partner with them for this event.”
Registration is open until the close of the event on Friday for anyone interested in rappelling and/or teams interested in fundraising to ‘Toss the Boss. Alll members of the community are invited to come watch participants and enjoy the day.