The Ararat Ruritan Club had a busy 2021 and is jumping right back into fundraising for the community with lots of events planned for 2022.
Among the events is the monthly jackpot Bingo, which has gained popularity since its inception in June of last year. For each month the jackpot is not won, the amount increases by $100 and number of draws to win the jackpot increases by one. Concessions are available and the fun is contagious from the ‘regular’ family and friend groups.
Virtual fundraiser/raffles “gaffles” are also held monthly; 20-30 chances are sold for items such as hunting supplies and Wood Brothers memorabilia. The monthly gaffle is listed on the first day of each month and is raffled off once all chances/spots are sold and paid.
The annual barbecue, ad book and cash giveaway are planned for the fall months and more information will be forthcoming.
The purpose of the FUNdraisers is to give back to the community. In 2021, there were several organizations who reaped benefit. The local fire, rescue and law enforcement agencies were given “Rudy” bears to have on hand for children during traumatic experiences they face when calls for service involve them. The local elementary school was gifted with school supplies at the beginning of each semester. Our bingo players chipped in and brought in a variety of supplies requested by the Patrick County Food Bank and a variety of toys for the Patrick County Christmas Cheer program. The club made numerous monetary donations throughout the year to these and other organizations that serve our community. We also help whenever we learn of need for families experiencing involuntary hardships.
We offer many opportunities for community service such as Road-Side Cleanup days, an Easter Egg Hunt, and a variety of crafting classes.
The hard work of many of our members was rewarded. Immediate Past President Merlin Scales was named as the Zone 1 President of the Year and became a Tom Downing Fellow, the highest honor bestowed upon a Ruritan. Secretary Pamela Smith was named as the Dan River Ruritan of the Year. Recruitment of new members is also rewarded by the National President with a “Golden Key.” Members who have those keys are Scales, Smith, Michael Noonkester, Kevin Smith, and Bradley Slate.
Our club building is used in many ways. Not only do we host events/fundraisers, but also the building is available for rent for your reunions, showers, birthday parties, or other get-togethers.
Our club meets on the first Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. All are invited to visit and help us help our community meet its needs.
We encourage you to follow us on Facebook to be up to date on our club and our goings on.
Contact Secretary Pamela Smith via telephone 276-229-6931, message us on Facebook, or via email AraratRuritanClub@gmail.com for all things Ruritan.