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EMMC Auxilary Beach Ball returns in Marc

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BANGOR The Eastern Maine Medical Center Auxilary will be holding their 10th Annual Winter Beach Ball at the Cross Insurance Center on March 4, from 7 to 11 p.m. The evening will be filled with the music from the Bob Charest Band, and there will be a cash bar and light refreshments. Beach attire is encouraged.

'We're pretty excited. Typically we get around 500 people. You're really going to need to get your tickets early - we're expecting to sell out,' said Kelli Roy, the Winter Beach ball Committee chair for 2016.

The proceeds of the Beach Ball are to benefit the new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), which gives critical care to infants that need special care or who have been born prematurely.

'The expectation is, based on research, that the outcomes [of NICU intervention] will be significantly improved for the infants and their families,' said Jan Currier, the president of the EMMC Auxilary.

This is the first year that the Ball will be held in March instead of January. The reason for the change in date was weather related. The 2014-2015 winter was particularly brutal in terms of temperature and travel conditions. Moving the Beach Ball to March will hopefully avoid some of the crazier weather that has been seen.

'We felt it would be more attractive,' said Currier.

Many have attended the Balls in spite of inclement weather.

'There will be wind and snow, and they're troopers, they arrive in Bermuda shorts and sandals,' said Helen Genco, the publicity committee chair of the EMMC Auxiliary, with a laugh. 'I don't understand it.'

In addition to the music and refreshments, there will be a free photo booth on hand, and attendees are encouraged to wear silly hats to commemorate the occasion. There will also be a 50/50 raffle.

The EMMC Auxiliary was established in 1893 and focuses on publica relations, fundraising and volunteering. With more than 200 members, they have raised over $3.4 million for the hospital and its programs. The Auxiliary's fundraising efforts had humble beginnings with bake sales; they have evolved over the years to become something more, and include the the Gift Shop and the Follies. Each year they also hold a Kitchen Tour, featuring six homes in the Bangor area, and a Wine Tour in the fall.

Last year, the Auxiliary raised nearly $90,000, which was distributed to the Raish Peavy Haskel Children's Cancer treatment Center, scholarships to Husson University, and the Children's Miracle Network.

There are opportunities for the community to sponsor the event ranging from Sea Horse level ($250) to Penguin level ($5,000) and everything in between. You can also set an amount that you would like to sponsor.

Tickets are $35 per person, or $350 for a table of 10. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 973-9095. If you purchase tickets online at www.emmcauxilary.org, you will not generate a paper ticket. You can also follow the event on Facebook.

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