Kutztown Community Partnership took the Ice Bucket Challenge, eagerly and willingly.
The excitement and nerves were high as KCP members lined up out front of their office on Main Street on a hot, sunny afternoon Aug. 27. Short handed for bucket dumpers, they pulled people off the street to help.
“Thank you, Sandy Green, for challenging me to do the Ice Bucket Challenge,” said KCP Secretary and Board Member Diane Piscitelli.
Counting down 1, 2, 3 and SPLASH, buckets of freezing cold ice water were dumped over her head, as well as the KCP Board, KCP Main Street Manager Nancy Brooks and Maria DiMaggio.
Afterwards, laughing and dripping wet, Piscitelli said, “It was more shocking than I had expected, but thank God it was a hot day.”
Kutztown Mayor Sandy Green had challenged Brooks and Piscitelli. In response, Piscitelli had challenged the KCP Board and officers to also participate with her.
“They were great sports, accepting the challenge,” said Piscitelli. “(The Ice Bucket Challenge) is a great idea. I think ALS needs to be brought to the forefront. We’re only going to hurt for a second. We’re all donating.”
Also joining in the challenge was Mamma’s Delight Pizza. Owner Vincenzo DiMaggio challenged his wife, Maria, so Maria lined up with KCP while Vincenzo photographed the big moment.
“It is a great way to make people aware of ALS. I think it is a great thing either you do the challenge with the water or you don’t, it’s good to donate to this great cause,” said Maria.
Mayor Green had been challenged by Sen. Judy Schwank. Green took the challenge on Aug. 20, with Police Chief Craig Summers dumping the ice bucket. “It is a shock, and he poured the water real slow,” she said.
In return, Green challenged Summers. She also challenged Kutztown University Acting President Dr. Carlos Vargas-Aburto and Kutztown School District Superintendent Kathy Metrick.
And the list goes on.
Kutztown Community Library Director Janet Yost, being a KCP member, accepted Mayor Green’s challenge.
“I really don’t like water, I really don’t like to get cold, but I’m excited to be able to help the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge,” said Yost. “I think it’s important we make people aware of it.”
Yost then challenged the entire Kutztown Community Library Board of Directors.
“I think it’s important that the Library Board is involved with the greater community and this is an opportunity to be nationally involved,” said Yost.
Yost emphasized that anyone can donate to ALS on their website at ALS.org and click on Ice Bucket Challenge.
“If you don’t want ice water poured on you, you can take the easy way out,” said Yost.
Here’s how it works. Donate at least $10 to ALS if you take the challenge, or donate $100 to ALS if you don’t take the challenge, said Mayor Green, encouraging everyone to donate.
“This is a wonderful fundraiser for ALS,” said Mayor Green.
According to als.org, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has taken the nation by storm. “People are literally soaking themselves to raise awareness and funds for ALS while figuratively ‘pouring cold water on the disease’ in hopes of finding a cure. While a fun activity that is perfectly tailored for the YouTube-era, the viral videos haven’t only taken over social media but have contributed to an avalanche of awareness and funding for The ALS Association’s many chapters.”
As of Aug. 25, The ALS Association reported on its website that the “national office and its 38 chapters have received a combined $79.7 million in donations compared to $2.5 million during the same time period last year (July 29 to August 25).”
“It’s probably the largest fundraiser ever,” said Mayor Green, who particularly likes that the Ice Bucket Challenge raises awareness about ALS.
“A lot of people don’t really know what ALS is, Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” she said. “It raises awareness and it raises funds and it’s a lot of fun to do, too.”