CHI Health Schuyler is poised to have a busy first two weekends of October, with its Auxiliary hosting its annual Hobby and Craft Market on Oct. 6 at the Oak Ballroom, followed by the hospital’s annual Fall Health Fair on Oct. 12.
The market raises money for hospital equipment and supplies. Admission is $1 and all money goes toward benefiting the CHI Memorial Hospital Auxiliary.
In the 43 years that the event has been around, it has evolved into one that has gone from solely being a fair for craftsmen and women into an event featuring a wide variety of vendors hawking both crafts and commercial items alike.
“When we first began, it was around the time that crafting became very popular,” Auxiliary President Rose Kracl said. “We were one of the first craft shows in the area. It was mainly all hand-made crafts, (but) over the years, crafting has died down, so in the past several years, we have allowed commercial products. We find that attracts people, also."
Available at the market will be brands like Pampered Chef kitchen products, Thirty-One Gifts and Watkins spices, not to mention the many local vendors who will provide a wide variety of different items like Christmas decor, canned goods, sauces, sauerkraut, dumplings and hand-made items like tea towels.
“Just about anything that you would see at a craft show,” Kracl said. “Anything that people are still making to sell at craft shows.”
Lunch will also be provided and a bake sale will also give guests the opportunity to purchase anything from kolaches to cookies to cakes. Everything in the sale is donated by auxiliary members to be sold at the market.
As for the health fair, the gathering allows people to have low-cost medical screenings and tests without the need for insurance. Claudia Lanuza, executive assistant for CHI Health Schuyler, said that the event is intended to give the hospital access to people in the community who may not have the ability to pay full-price for lab work.
“We do this in efforts to reach people of our community who may or may not have access to insurance, have high deductibles or have not met their deductible,” Lanuza said. “We believe that health screenings are important to be able to provide preventative care. This is something that is offered to the general community.”
Blood wellness panels and flu shots are available for $35. The panels will provide information about blood sugar, cholesterol and blood count, as well as status updates on kidney and liver function in addition to informing people about their electrolyte status.
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“That’s something that we hope to get a lot of people interested in,” Lanuza said.
It is recommended that people fast for 12 hours the day prior to the screening, with the exception of drinking water. Providing a service that normally costs more than $500 to the people for significant markdown should help with bringing in people who may normally be turned off by high prices for tests.
“The purpose is to promote well being,” Lanuza said. “It’s open to people that are not our patients, as well. We can send results to the patient individually or to the provider of their choice. It’s just emphasizing the importance of getting this screening done so that they can know their numbers because that’s the most important piece, to be able to provide that care to everybody.”
Attendees can also get screenings for prostate cancer and thyroid issues, as well as monitorings of blood sugar for diabetics. There will be informational booths and raffles, with a door prize of a festive fall wreath the top prize.
The fair is a popular event and Lanuza is expecting another good crowd this year. The goal is to have 200 people in the door ready to boost their personal health and their health knowledge.
“If we could see an increase in the numbers, that would be great,” Lanuza said. “That’s telling us that people are taking advantage of this service and it encourages us to continue with this fall health fair.”
Kracl’s goal is simple: Make money to provide new and improved equipment and technology for the hospital and to keep the market going for another 43 years and beyond.
“We just hope to keep it going on and on until there are no more vendors,” Kracl said. “We hope to make enough money to purchase more equipment for the hospital.”
Zach Roth is a reporter for the Schuyler Sun. Reach him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.