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Fulton winery hosts fundraiser for cell phone chargers at hospitals

Fulton winery hosts fundraiser for cell phone chargers at hospitals

August 20th, 2014 in News

Serenity Valley Winery and Cherie's Cake Boutique are teaming up for the second time to host a fundraiser for hospital phone chargers.

The Summer Family Festival will be 3 p.m. until dark Saturday at Serenity Valley Winery, 1888 County Road 342 west of Fulton. All proceeds will go to providing an NV3 Rapid Cell Phone Charging Kiosk for the Veterans Administration Hospital in Columbia.

Regina Ruppert, owner of Serenity Valley Winery, said she discovered the important role cell phones play at hospitals years ago when her husband experienced chest pains and was rushed to the hospital. Her phone was dead as she and doctors contemplated surgery. Still trying to make a decision, she left the hospital to find her daughter who was studying at the University of Missouri's School of Nursing to inform her of the situation.

By the time Ruppert returned to her husband, he was being prepped for surgery. That was when Ruppert first realized the need for cell phone charging kiosks in hospitals.

"That's where you life line is to outside world," Ruppert said.

She hopes to raise enough money to supply the VA Hospital with two kiosks - each costs about $1,500. Donations from last year's fundraiser provided a kiosk in the emergency room at University Hospital and another at the Women's and Children's Hospital.

Food and direct sale vendors will be present and vendors will have children's activities at their booths so youngsters can be entertained as their parents shop, Ruppert said. There will also be a bounce house and other activities for children.

For the adults, beer and Serenity Valley wine will be on sale. Music and entertainment will remain steady throughout the event, but there are a few entertainment highlights in the evening.

Starting at 5 p.m., musician Banastre Tarleton will entertain guests with classic oldies hits. David Graham, a family-friendly comedian featured on the cable network Comedy Central and the show "Last Comic Standing," will take the stage at 6 p.m.

"(David Graham) is enjoyable if you're small, middle-aged or old," Ruppert said. "He's for all ages, really."

Rocket Kirchner, Columbia-based musician, will perform 7:30-9:30 p.m. There will also be a silent auction and enough shade and water to cool down during what's supposed to be a hot summer day. According to the National Weather Service, the high is 96 degrees with a low of 73 degrees on Saturday night.

Adult admission is $8 and children under 12 are $4. VIP admission is an option at a $20 cost. It includes a T-shirt, glass of wine or beer and general admission.

Ruppert added that she plans to continue the annual event until a kiosk can be found in every Mid-Missouri hospital.