HUBBARDSTON — It all started with an idea.
Hands on Hubbardston began with a conversation about how more could be done to help those fighting cancer. Since then, the group has grown from five people to about 20 people, plus countless volunteers and donors.
“Everybody knows somebody who has cancer,” said President Ann Thorn of Pewamo. “It touches all of us.”
Hands on Hubbardston’s first organized venture was a major success. An Acoustic Evening with Hubbardston & Friends took place March 10 and raised $5,000.
“It was a pretty good kick-off to what we’re trying to get accomplished,” said Vice President Scott Schmitt of Carson City. “It was unbelievable. I was just flabbergasted at the generosity.”
Hands on Hubbardston members want to raise a total of $25,000 this year for the American Cancer Society. The funds will be donated to the Grand Rapids chapter, so the money can stay in the West Michigan area. Hands on Hubbardston has raised at least $7,000.
A second organized event, dubbed Hubbapalooza, is scheduled for Saturday, July 7. The family-friendly festival will feature a relay walk, a candy walk, a dunk tank, a horseshoe tournament, a softball tournament, a soap box derby, inflatable toys and concession stands. The day will end with music by local bands from 6 p.m. to midnight.
“It’s a family event,” Thorn said. “It’s going to be a good time.”
Hubbapalooza is sponsored by Carson Health, Carson Village Market, The Celtic Path, Farmers Insurance, Galloup Co., Hubbardston Market, Muir Village Market, Shiels Tavern and Walter T. Roach American Legion Post 182.
Hands on Hubbardston is planning a third event this year for autumn — a “dress your decade’ dance with music from the 1940s through now.
“People are just coming out of the woodwork to help us,” Thorn said. “Our heart is in Hubbardton. That’s where we grew up, where we went to school.”
The Hands on Hubbardston website and fliers are designed by Jeff Smith of Grand Ledge. Fliers will be handed out during the village of Westphalia’s Fourth of July parade this Wednesday.
For more information, visit www.handsonhubbardston.org or search for “Hands On Hubbardston” on Facebook.