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Hoover Service Club Hearts and Harmony2013
Hoover Service Club Hearts and Harmony Gala 2013.
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Photos courtesy of Lynda Wasden.
Hoover Service Club Gift Wrapping
Hoover Service Club members participate in service projects such as a Christmas gift-wrapping at Riverchase Galleria for Grace House Ministries.
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Hoover Service Club Clay House
Hoover Service Club members collect items for The Clay House, an advocacy center for children.
2014 Hearts and Harmony Gala
Feb. 14 • 6:30 p.m.
Embassy Suites Hotel
What began in 1975 as a small group of ladies wanting to do something as simple as paying a fellow community member’s power bill has now blossomed into a thriving club of women making a lasting impact in the Hoover community.
“We do a lot of hands-on service,” Hoover Service Club member Lynda Wasden said. “We choose organizations that serve the people of Hoover and are truly in need.”
The Hoover Service Club will host the second annual Hearts and Harmony Gala at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 14 at the Embassy Suites Hotel on John Hawkins Parkway. The night will include a steak dinner and live and silent auction, with such items as a shrimp boil for 50 provided by Shane Hill, author of the Tailgate Cookbook, a trip to Hawaii from AAA Alabama, and a special piece of jewelry from Steeds Jewelers. The band Ain’t Misbehavin’ will provide music for the evening.
“We originally did a fashion show, but decided to go to a nighttime event last year,” Wasden said. “And we were just blown away. What we make this year will be given next year. The more money we make, the more scholarships we can give and the more community organizations we can help.”
Tickets are $100 per person, $50 of which is tax-deductible. Last year’s event raised almost $40,000 that will be used for college scholarships for high school students in Hoover and the club’s various charities.
The Hoover Service Club, a nonprofit organization for civic-minded women, was organized in May 1975 by Flora Mae Pike and 10 other women. The club donates to 21 different charitable organizations a year and today has approximately 170 members.
“All of our time is completely voluntary,” club member Jennifer Caton said. “The money that we raise, you can actually see that it makes a difference. And we want to keep growing.”
Membership dues are $20 per year and the club meets the second Thursday of each month at 11 a.m. at Hoover Country Club. Wasden said that every meeting the group brings items for a different charitable group such as local food bank.
“We always have a brief speaker at our meetings that talks about one of the charities we donate to so members will know where our money is going,” Caton said.
The main goals of the organization are to give aid to the needy in our community, to further education through scholarships and to recognize outstanding volunteer service in the community. Yearly projects include a Christmas gift-wrapping booth at Riverchase Galleria for Grace House Ministries and filling up Easter baskets for distribution by Green Valley Food Bank. The women also provide school supplies for foster children.
In May 2013, the club awarded $14,200 in scholarships to selected students of Hoover’s high schools. The club’s scholarship committee coordinates these awards. The group’s 2013-14 scholarship budget is $16,000.
“The Scholarship Committee is one of the most rewarding committees to be on,” Wasden said. “They actually go to the schools and interview the students. It really gives us as women who may not have young children anymore a good insight into what’s going on in the youth community and how important it is for us to support them.”
Caton agreed that the scholarship process gives insight into Hoover’s civic-minded youth.
“When we have scholarship meetings, just listening to how these students are so involved in the community at such a young age is amazing,” Caton said. “We want to reward that, we want to recognize that and we encourage them to continue that.”
Wasden said that being a member of the club holds personal meaning.
“It’s more rewarding to us than anything, because it gives us a feeling that we are doing something worthwhile,” Wasden said. “And not only that but I have made some dear friends because of it. We are truly an interesting group of people.”
For Hearts and Harmony Gala tickets or additional information about the Hoover Service Club, call Lynda Wasden at 981-1242.