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August 2011 eNewsletter 

Chapter Director’s Note 

Lesley professional photo A.jpg

Two weekends ago, I drove past farmland out to Howe Road Park in Tallmadge with my husband to take part in the Take Steps Akron kick off.  I was filled with excitement for our very first kick off in Akron and to meet all our wonderful Team Captains, walkers, and the family and friends who came out to show their support.

 The group of about 35 of us played a few get-to-know-you games, enjoyed picnic food, and even played some kickball out on the baseball diamond.  We showed the world premiere screening of ‘You Are So Beautiful’ by Laura Cox, a charming video that brought the house down with laughter.  Keep an eye on our website for a link to the video – it’s coming soon.

With just one month before the Akron walk, things are kicking into high gear!  We are recruiting school teams - now that school is back in session, finalizing sponsorship agreements, and making plans for the big event.  Please contact Katie at if you would like to start a school team (elementary, middle, high school or college) or your own friends and family team.  Everyone is welcome!  We are so pleased to be able to reach more of Northeastern Ohio with Take Steps and to build more relationships in the Akron community. 

I look forward to seeing you at Lock 3 as we Take Steps toward a cure for Crohn’s and colitis, led by Andy Peel, our Local Hero.      


Lesley Hoover

Lesley Hoover, Chapter Director 

Donor Spotlight: Sue and Jim Kandell 

Kandell.jpg“In 1996 when our daughter Lisa was a college freshman about 2,000 miles away from home, she began to have “attacks”, as she called them, of stomach cramping, diarrhea and fatigue. She’d had these as a preteen and teenager, but her pediatrician, and a pediatric gastroenterologist, both felt she just had a “nervous stomach”. We were advised to “watch” her diet. 

At Christmas her attacks became so bad we took her to the local emergency room. They too felt she would be fine... maybe a “female” problem.

She returned to college and within a few weeks she could hardly get out of bed, and her symptoms had escalated. Susan flew out to be with her and got her into a wonderful gastroenterologist who immediately diagnosed her with severe crohns disease. When he saw we were from N.E. Ohio he told us to get the first flight out and go directly to the Cleveland Clinic where he arranged for her to be admitted and set her up with a doctor. She was in the clinic for 2 weeks and then Dr. Scott Strong operated on her, removing almost 2 feet of infected intestines. She had a few set backs, but healed up, returned to college in the Fall and today  she’s a 33 year old busy mother of 3 lively children! She had no problems with any of her pregnancies, she’s off all medications (except for a powdered mix for diarrhea) and her local gastroenterologist says she’s a “miracle”. 

"We will be forever indebted to the Cleveland Clinic, their doctors and surgeons and CCFA.”   

Volunteer Spotlight: Bob and Norma Westfall 

A big thank you to Bob and Norma Westfall for their hard work and continued dedication to CCFA Northeast Ohio.  Bob is a former Board Member, currently serves on the Golf Tournament Committee, and as the Corporate Recruitment Chair for Take Steps Akron.  Bob will also be manning his industrial-size grill at Lock 3 on the day of the walk, grilling up Sugar Dale hot dogs.  Norma serves on the Take Steps Committee and is spearheading the Chinese Raffle by securing donations from area businesses, stores, and restaurants.  Bob and Norma are two of the most extraordinary volunteers we could ask for and we are grateful for their long-time support!  

Call for Volunteers 

CCFA is looking for a few good volunteers to help with set up, manning booths, accounting, children’s activities, and tear-down – all for Take Steps Akron.  Please email Katie: if you are interested and available on October 1.  We are counting on your support.   

Attention Shoppers: Online Auction In November to Benefit CCFA   

Online Auction Logo.jpgWe will be hosting our first ever online auction to raise funds to support mission-critical programs from November 1 – 13th, 2011, with a month-long preview during October.  This is an opportunity to do your holiday season shopping while supporting CCFA at the same time! 

Our chapter is working in collaboration with CCFA Michigan on this auction, so you’ll have the opportunity to bid on a wide variety of items.  Each chapter will be securing donations from area businesses, restaurants, and stores, which we’ll make available for purchase online via our own Bidding For Good site:  We’ll also be seeking vacation packages and other getaways.  Please contact Lesley to learn more, join the event committee, or donate an item:, 216.524.7700. 

Cleveland Clinic Mustache Shaving Contest

The H50 and H51 Nursing Units at the Cleveland Clinic are in-patient hospital units that specialize in the care of patients who have had some form of colorectal surgery.  The classic patients who receive care typically have a diagnosis of Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, or some form of colon or rectal cancer. 

These Nursing Units put together a fun-spirited fundraiser for the CCFA – a mustache shaving contest!  The fundraiser consisted of selling raffle tickets – each ticket counted as a vote for one of the three mustachioed contestants offering to shave their mustache if they won/lost (depending on your interpretation) the contest.   When the end of the contest rolled around, and the group had not met their fundraising goal of $500, the three mustachioed men put their heads together and bravely pledged that they would all shave their mustaches if the goal was met.  Within 5 minutes of this announcement, they met the goal, and all three men shaved off their mustaches.  CCFA thanks the H50 and H51 Nursing Units at the Cleveland Clinic for their generosity and creativity!


Take Steps Akron Is Only One Month Away

Poo Bear.jpgCurrently, we have raised $22,000+, which brings us to 40% of our fundraising goal of $55,000.  If you weren’t able to be a fundraising team for Cleveland or happen to live in the Akron area, please join us on October 1st at Lock 3 Park.  Thank you to all our walkers and Team Captains for their fundraising efforts – we couldn’t do it without you.  Congratulations to Team Poo Bear, which is only $10 away from being the 1st team entered into our team banner decorating contest (teams are eligible for entry once they raise $1,000!). 

Be a part of finding a cure.  Register today at 

CCFA Supports Patients with Insurance, School Accomodations, and Life Insurance

Available for download on our website, CCFA's appeal letters can help patients get the services and resources that they need: 

CCFA at Earth Fare Dinner Night - Thursday, September 8th 

EarthFare.JPGAs part of our growing partnership with Earth Fare, CCFA will be participating in their Family Dinner Night as the featured nonprofit.  Did you know that kids eat FREE at Earth Fare every Thursday night from 4 -8?  When an adult spends just $5 on his or her dinner, up to six kids can enjoy our fun, healthy kids’ meals for FREE.  To learn more about Family Dinner Night and Earth Fare, visit:

CCFA staff will be on site to promote Take Steps Akron, and lead several children’s activities including face painting and creating both get well and greeting cards.  We expect 150-200 kids to attend.  If you’re in the area, come out to say hello and show your support.


Team Challenge Vegas Season Kicks Off in True Vegas Style

Local Hero Benjamin Anderson with Elvis.jpgThe Vegas Kick Off took place Thursday, August 25 at the Hard Rock Café in downtown Cleveland.  25 registered participants enjoyed heavy hors d'oeuvres compliments of the Hard Rock Café along with scrumptious desserts from Cakelets Candies, heard a brief presentation by staff, mentors, and coaches, and even took photos with Elvis!  Highlights of the evening included Paige Anderson winning a Tom Jones record in ‘Team Challenge Poker’ and presenting an award to our top early bird fundraiser – Katie Gallets, who has already raised $5,000+.

At right, our local hero, Benjamin Anderson poses with Elvis. 

There’s still time to join the team!  Due to popular demand, we are hosting a LAST CALL INFO SESSION on Friday, September 2, 6:30 at Shulas 2 at the Doubletree: 6200 Quarry Lane, Cleveland, OH 44131Free appetizers will be provided in the private dining room, just ask for the Team Challenge party.  Please email to RSVP or get more information.  Don’t miss out on this life-changing experience!                                                                   

READY TO COMMIT NOW?  Register today to take on Vegas and help find a cure for Crohn’s and colitis! 


Team Northeast Ohio has already put together several red hot fundraisers for Team Challenge:

  • Nancy and Joe Melenick’s One-Day Bus Trip to Presque Isle Downs in Erie, PA.  Hop on the bus from either the East or West side of Cleveland on Saturday, September 17 for an unforgettable ride, good company, casino gambling, and raising money for a good cause.  To sign up or learn more, contact Nancy: or (440) 213-8104. Deadline to sign up is Wednesday, August 31.
  •  Debbie and Naomi Isaak-Shapiro’s Yogurt Vi benefit night on October 10 from 4:00-8:00 p.m. in Legacy Village

Rachel Jerry.jpg

Rachel, a Team Challenge mentor, poses with Jerry who will be running in Vegas. 


2011 Golf Tournament a Tremendous Success! 

Jessica Edelstein.jpgAfter a false start where we had to postpone for a week due to standing water on the course, CCFA’s 24th Annual Golf Tournament was a triumph.  The weather was beautiful, Tony Rizzo and Aaron Goldhammer from WKNR ESPN Cleveland were engaging, and attendees bid high and often during the auctions. 

We’re happy to report that the live auction generated $8,700 and the silent auction generated $4,035.  We’re in the process of totaling all income and expenses from the event to determine our net proceeds which will support CCFA Northeast Ohio’s mission-critical programs.  A big thank you to William Sopko & Sons - our generous Title Sponsor, as well as all our other event sponsors, donors, in-kind donors to the auctions, and our volunteers.   

Tony Rizzo.jpgBill Sopko.jpg 

Tony Rizzo and Aaron Goldhammer broadcast live from the 24th annual golf outing. Bill Sopko, joins in the broadcast.





Car Show.JPG

Paula and Lee Vollman of the Northern Ohio Classic Chevy Club present donation check to Chapter Director Lesley Hoover, Sunday, August 28 at Pat O'Brien Chevrolet in Willoughby Hills.  The Chevy Club generously donated the proceeds from the car show to two local charities:  the USO and CCFA.  We are grateful for their $1,300+ donation and the opportunity to introduce our mission and program to attendees.  



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Chapter Sponsor 

Cleveland Clinic








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Our mission


To cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases.

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