The following are fundraisers, donations and charitable events happening in the Midlands. Email your information about good deeds to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 402-444-1040.
Gift from farmer: Bryan Rentschler, a third-generation farmer, donated grain to the West Holt Medical Services Foundation of Atkinson, Neb. He directed the foundation to use proceeds from the sale of the grain to purchase the latest therapy equipment for West Holt Therapy Services.
Traveling to help: Ten students representing Boston University's Community Service Program left Omaha Saturday after helping Rebuilding Together Omaha repair the home of Adner Hervey. The students cleaned, painted the interior of the home and made minor repairs, including replacing two basement steps and the dryer vent. Rebuilding Together and the students replaced kitchen cabinets and the floor, both of which were water-damaged. The goal of all the work was to make the home safer. Rebuilding Together Omaha does home repair work and home modifications for low-income elderly and disabled homeowners of any age.
Celebrating: Catnip and Tails, a local cat rescue, will have a St. Patrick's Day fundraiser beginning at 11:30 a.m. today at Harold's Bar, 8558 Blondo St. A corned beef and cabbage dinner will cost $7. There also will be a raffle and silent auction.
Discount coupons: Goodwill Industries and Younkers encourage consumers to donate and save during the semiannual Younkers Goodwill Sale. It began Wednesday and will end March 30. Younkers stores will accept donations of used clothing and soft home goods to benefit Goodwill. In return, donors will get discount coupons for Younkers stores. Consumers can visit millionactsofgoodwill.com to learn more about the event.
Backing agriculture: Omaha Agri-Business Club and Nebraska Agribusiness Club will celebrate National Ag Week with a banquet Monday at the Eastern Nebraska 4-H Center, 21520 Nebraska Highway 31 in Gretna. Tickets at the door are $25 per person. A no-host social hour and silent auction will begin at 5:30 p.m. with dinner and program at 6:45 p.m. Featured speaker will be Neil Moseman, agriculture and energy policy director for U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer of Nebraska. All proceeds will go to the Nebraska 4-H Foundation, Nebraska FFA, Ag in the Classroom, Ag Awareness Coalition, Nebraska LEAD Program, and an agriculture group named by the winner of the Agri-Business Club Leadership Award.
Wildlife habitat: Pheasants Forever, Douglas County West Chapter, will host its seventh annual banquet to raise funds to benefit wildlife habitat improvement locally and to teach local youths about safe hunting and outdoorsmanship. The dinner and auction will begin at 7 p.m. Thursday at The Club at Indian Creek, 3825 N. 202nd St. Tickets for dinner and Pheasants Forever membership are $60 in advance or $70 at the door; spouses and youths are $25. Contact Damon at 402-253-5017 or email@example.com.
By the busload: Metropolitan Community College, Cargo Zone LLC and Metro transit are driving literacy with 20,000 free new books. They will be given away from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday at three Omaha locations. Books by the Busload has given away books via Metro bus to area families since 2011. This year, buses will be at Heartland Workforce Solutions, 5752 Ames Ave.; Salvation Army Kroc Center, 2825 Y St. in the front parking lot; and Westroads Mall, in the parking lot in front of Dick's Sporting Goods. The public is invited to browse the books in a library-like setting on the Metro buses and take home free books. Books will be available for all ages and reading levels.
Garden design: The “Container Garden Design Event” will run from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Douglas/Sarpy County Extension office, 8015 West Center Road. Extension Master Gardeners are sponsors. This event supports the Master Gardener's 2013 Spring “Sense Sational Dream Garden Raffle,” with proceeds going to Friends of Extension and 4-H in Douglas/Sarpy County Foundation. Extension Associate Kathleen Cue will host the event with these designers: Bob Henrickson, program coordinator, Nebraska Statewide Arboretum; Addie Kinghorn, adjunct teacher, Metropolitan Community College; and Jan Riggenbach, syndicated garden columnist.
Each designer will have 20 minutes to create a unique design container. After a short break, there will be a brief question-and-answer session with the designers and then an auction of their containers. All monies raised from the auction will go to the foundation. Admission is free, but a donation of nonperishable food items for the Food Bank for the Heartland is requested.
Brain tumor: Justin Easdale, 8, has had brain surgery to remove a large malignant tumor and is undergoing radiation to ensure the cancer does not spread. He is the son of Jeff and Jill Easdale of Omaha. A benefit spaghetti dinner for the Easdales will run from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday at Westside Church, 15050 West Dodge Road. Tickets for the dinner are $10 and must be purchased at https://justins-journey.ticketbud.com/benefit-dinner. Donations to help defray the medical expenses can be made at gofundme.com/justins-journey.
Race, egg hunt: Alpha Xi Delta Sorority at the University of Nebraska at Omaha will host the Step It Up 5K/10K race to benefit Autism Speaks and the sorority's annual Easter egg hunt March 30 at Zorinsky Lake's Shelter 5. Sign-in for runners will start at 8:30 a.m. The egg hunt will start at 9 a.m. with the race starting at 10 a.m. Preregister for the race at stepitup2013.weebly.com or sign up the day of the event. The race is $25 for adults, $15 for students and $10 for children. The egg hunt is free to the public. Also expect a blow-up obstacle course, face painting, raffle and bake sale.
Basketball bash: College basketball is the talk of the town. Watch both NCAA semifinal games and join Lucky Bucket Brewing Co. to support Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Midlands at the Big Basketball Bash. Cheer on the four semifinal teams in style at Champions Run, 13800 Eagle Run Drive, starting at 4:30 p.m. April 6. Tickets are $40 in advance, $50 at the door. Buy tickets at bbbsomaha.org or by calling 402-905-3346. Guests will enjoy food, beer and three large screens to catch all the action. Guests must be 21 or older.
Medical help: A group of 19 University of Nebraska at Kearney students left Friday for South America to work in health clinics in remote indigenous villages in Colombia, Brazil and Peru. The students will be there eight days, working for the Amazon Medical Project, one of Medical Mission International's health outreach programs. The majority of students on the trip are health science majors.For most of the people who live in this area being served, this project is the only medical treatment they receive.
Spring break: For a second straight year, students and staff from Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa, spent last week's spring break doing volunteer work for Rebuild Joplin. There they assisted with housing repairs for tornado-affected residents of the Missouri city. Rebuild Joplin is a nonprofit partnered with the St. Bernard Project to provide long-term recovery and rebuilding of affordable and safe housing for May 2011 tornado victims. Another BCU team went to Jerusalem Farm in Kansas City, Mo. In addition to completing home repair projects for the underprivileged in Kansas City, BCU volunteers worked in a soup kitchen and food pantry. A third Briar Cliff team worked on Habitat for Humanity construction sites in Sioux City's Riverside area.
— Compiled by Sue Story Truax