Eagles donate dance proceeds from New Year’s Eve to Emma’s House

The Fraternal Order of Eagles has donated money to Emma’s House, the Bitterroot Valley Children’s Advocacy Center, from the proceeds of their New Year’s Eve Ball.

“It was fantastic,” said Eagles’ dance committee member Ronnie Leonard. “We raised over $1,600 for Emma’s House and we collected over 100 pounds of food for Haven House. It was really wonderful, we had some huge donors. This shows the spirit of the community and their support for Emma’s House – for a dance where the admission is only $10.”

On Wednesday, the six-member committee visited Emma’s House, took a tour of the facility and presented the check.

“We were humbled by the outpouring of donations from the community and support of the dance and Emma’s House,” said Yvonne Torres. “The donation is on behalf of the Eagles, and we’re selecting a charity each month to donate the proceeds from our dance to.”

Valerie Widmer, executive director of Emma’s House, received the check.

“It’s amazing what a small group of people can pull off for an organization that provides for kids,” said Widmer. “This is a huge amount for us, thank you.”

“People are starting to know about these dances,” said Torres.

“It’s good for the Eagles, good for the charities and good for the community,” added Mario Torres. “This is the second charity dance we’ve done, but the first one of the year. We’ve convinced the Eagles that to continue to be the right kind of organization – people helping people – we need new members, we need notoriety and we need to make it fun.”

“There are so many organizations in the valley that are doing great work and some of them are smaller,” said Widmer. “It is so cool that you are thinking of all the different places.”

The Eagles Auxiliary has made additional donations to the Bitterroot Public Library for their large print collection and also to Dream Catcher Weighted Blankets of Stevensville.

The Eagles have selected Supporters for Abuse Free Environments (S.A.F.E.) as the nonprofit group to receive their donations and profits from their event and dance Feb. 13. The evening begins with tacos and more – 5:30 to 7 p.m., and the dance is from 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. with music by the Revelators. The dance-donation is $7 and there will be an opportunity to have your portrait taken by Maria Duggan of Perfect Gift Portrait Studio.

Hannah Honey