Rallying for Lane

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Pair of efforts announced to support Frederick family

A Spencer church youth group and a local junior class organization, associated with the Chamber of Commerce, have projects planned to help remember Lane Frederick and his family this holiday season. Frederick, a student at Spencer High School, was injured during an alleged altercation involving a classmate after school on Oct. 19, is currently participating in rehabilitation services in Omaha, Nebraska.

On Friday, Faith Lutheran Church in north Spencer, will host a team-based scavenger hunt, followed by a free family movie, with all proceeds to go to the Frederick family. Those participating in the scavenger hunt will meet at the church to begin registering at 5 p.m. at which time they will receive a map and directions. Registration will close at 5:30 p.m. and the hunt will begin.

“The idea actually came from high school kids themselves,” said Eric Patten, director of children and youth at Faith Lutheran Church. “Our youth wanted to help. They saw a need and really wanted to help Lane. They sat down and brain-stormed and the scavenger hunt and free movie is what came out.”

He added, the Frederick family does not attend Faith Lutheran. “This is just something we wanted to do. We have a couple of our members in the church who are related to the family.”

Teams of four to five people are suggested at a cost of $15 per team. Teams of all ages will be accepted. Each team must have a car with a driver, a cell phone for pictures and be dressed appropriately for the weather.

Patten said participants will have 1 1/2 hours to complete the hunt, but the faster the better.

“If they do it faster, that’s great,” he said. “It’s the first team done that will win the prize.”

Once the hunt is completed, the church will host a family movie at no charge with a concession stand offering hot dogs, popcorn and drinks for a freewill offering.

All funds raised from the two events will go to the Frederick family.

Patten said the decision on a film would be made during the youth group’s session after press time Wednesday night.

“It will be a PG, probably animated, family movie which is good for all ages,” Patten said.

Those with questions can reach Patten at 580-4316 or student organizers Taelynn Higgins at thiggins2019@spencerschools.org or Cayann Knoer at cknoer2019@spencer schools.org.

Then, beginning Monday, a collaborative effort between participants and organizers in the SHS and chamber’s Junior Leadership Spencer program, will introduce “Holiday Hoorah” through Dec. 12 to raise money for their recovering classmate.

Student leaders at Spencer High School came up with the idea of giving and caring about following the health challenges of senior Austin Crew, a graduate of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce’s Junior Leadership Spencer program this past spring.

Members of the program approached the Spencer Chamber of Commerce about involving the community in caring for others.

Emma VerSteeg, a current member of the Junior Leadership Spencer, sent an email to the chamber office seeking a meeting to discuss the matter further.

“The community of Spencer — and those living nearby — unified around Austin Crew, and we knew there would be support for this effort,” Bill Campbell, executive director of the Spencer Chamber of Commerce. “We encouraged our chamber leaders to attend this meeting with students from this year’s junior class at Spencer High School.”

Crew, a senior at the school, suffered a cardiac arrest immediately following a high school football game in Storm Lake, and required life saving measures and a stay at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital before he was able to return home.

Following the initial meeting between the students and chamber representatives, two projects were identified, the first, Holiday Hoorah to benefit Frederick.

While Frederick is in Omaha, his family continues to spend time with him and the students realize that comes at a cost.

Interested individuals who wish to contribute to Holiday Hurrah are encouraged to donate the following items as outlined by Haley Schwenneker, a member of the student group.

“We are asking for donations of cash, gas cards, Chamber Bucks and restaurant cards to help this family as they are going through a tough time this Christmas,” Schwenneker said.

Team members include Emily Beehler, Katie Halverson, Cayann Knoer, Schwenneker, VerSteeg, Jace Wiemers and Charlie Zulk. Those assisting the student team include Spencer High School Principal Elli Wiemers, Spencer Chamber Director Bill Campbell, Spencer Chamber Board President Kevin Brown, Spencer Chamber Past President Cindy Tigges and Jane Campbell, with Iowa Lakes Community College.

Donations may be dropped off or mailed to Spencer High School, 800 E. Third St.; or the Spencer Chamber of Commerce, 1805 Highway Blvd. Chamber Bucks can be purchased at the chamber office and financial donations can be written to the chamber’s newly formed foundation.

“We didn’t know what would happen with these ideas, yet those of us involved in the project are truly getting a chance to gain leadership skills as we plan this donation campaign,” VerSteeg said. “We hope others in the community will open their hearts and donate to this cause.”

Those who wish to communicate via social media are encouraged to use #COWBOYTOUGH. General questions may be directed to the Spencer Chamber of Commerce at 262-5680.

The team also plans to hold an event in February to invite young people from area communities to Spencer in a show of unity with plans to benefit others in the future.

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