WEIRTON - Big hats and bow ties filled the room Saturday during the Rotary Club of Weirton's annual "Run for the Roses" fundraiser gala at Williams Country Club.
The event, which featured a Kentucky Derby theme on the day of the 140th running of the major horse race, is among the club's biggest events of the year, raising money for its many programs.
The Rotary Club of Weirton, each year, shows its support of the community by funding a scholarship for local high school students, as well as sponsoring the Madonna and Weir High School city basketball championship, the Weirton Rotary Youth Soccer League, the Weirton United Way, local academic games competitions, the Hugh O'Brien Youth Leadership program, the Salvation Army and youth exchange programs and many other local organizations.
They also have supported medical facilities in India and the Philippines, safe water in Africa and Rotary International's goals to eliminate polio.
It's not just about raising money, according to club President George Charnie.
"What's important is that people have a good time," Charnie said. "It's so much more fun to have a party and everyone enjoys themselves."
FUNDRAISER — Attendees of Saturday’s Rotary Club of Weirton “Run for the Roses” event watch the Kentucky Derby as part of the fundraiser held at Williams Country Club. Proceeds will benefit several of the club’s charities, including an annual scholarship fund. -- Craig Howell
GROOVE?DOCTORS?PERFORM? — The Groove Doctors performed for the crowd Saturday, playing a variety of selections for attendees as they danced later in the evening. -- Craig Howell
Charnie expressed his appreciation toward Rotarian Rhonda Quattrochi for organizing the event, as well as the sponsors, those who purchased tickets or made contributions, as well as the staff at Williams Country Club.
Among Saturday's activities, attendees took part in drawings based upon the results of the Kentucky Derby, held a hat contest for the ladies, and took a chance at dozens of prizes donated by area businesses and individuals.
Live musical entertainment for the evening was provided by the Joseph Sisters and the Groove Doctors.
Among the sponsors for Saturday's event were:
Blue Club: Serra Village Retirement Community; Charnie Insurance and Open MRI
Wheel Club: First Choice America Community Federal Credit Union; Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort; James White Construction and Weirton Medical Center
Spoke Club: Steuben Radiology Associates; Dr. Atul Shetty; Ohio Valley Neurology Associates; Orion Development; Dan Guida; Steve Magnone; Acuity Healthcare
Friends Club: Newbrough Photo; Steel City Distributing; Weirton Holiday Inn; Gus's Goodies; Steel and Wolfe Funeral Home; the Lawn Barber; Morisetty Medical Associates; the City of Weirton; PS Marketing; Dr. Aman Purewal and Southwestern Nephology Inc.
Additional support provided by SAL Chemical; West Virginia Northern Community College; Iannetti's Garden Center; Theo Yianni's; Hancock County Savings Bank; McKinley and Associates; Tri-State Medical Group; Nathan and Julie Mazur; DeeJay's; HDR Engineering; Anile Pharmacy; RE Saxon Jeweler; Mr. and Mrs. Ed Bowman; Dan Greathouse; Ferguson Tire; Starvaggi Charities; Steve Magnone, CPA; Jack Fowler State Farm Insurance; Mainstream Physical Therapy; Weirton Lumber; Joe Barnabei; Jim Williams, WesBanco; Sherwin-Williams; Galloway Law Offices; Ronnie Jones; Randy Swartzmiller; Village Pharmacy; McCauslen Any Occasion; Mario's Restaurant; Basil Center; Penn-Way Pharmacy; Health Care Solutions; Sen. Rocky Fitzsimmons; Jeff Davis; United Bank; Patrick Maloney Designs; Aaron's; Dr. Nandra; Dr. G. Purewal; DeFelice Pizza; Fox's Pizza Den; Eat 'n Park; Mike Gianni; Woodview Golf Club; Fuzzy Peach; WEIR Radio; Undo's; Comfort Inn; Fairfield Inn and Suites; Holiday Inn; Marsh Hardware; I Love Yogurt; Frankovitch, Anetakis, Colantonio and Simon Law Offices.
(Howell can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, and followed via Twitter @CHowellWDT)