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Crumley House fundraiser offers taste of the islands

Suzanne Rhodes • Sep 5, 2018 at 1:30 PM

The Crumley House in Limestone, Tennessee, is a house of a special kind, with windows open to possibility for brain-injured people. Survivors of accidents, crime, stroke and other catastrophic events receive a wide range of structured activities and services when they come to the Crumley House Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center. The center is the only nonprofit in the state offering residential and day clients a wide range of services, such as cognitive retraining, assistive technology, social interaction, daily living skills, and occupational and speech therapy.

To support these vital programs, Crumley House is hosting its 10th Annual Polynesian Beach Party fundraiser on Sept. 15 at the Johnson City Country Club. June Barrett, founder of Crumley House, explains the importance of the event.

“We do not receive state or federal funds, so our fundraiser efforts are essential to keep our state-of-the-art center operational,” she explained.

Barrett opened the doors of the Crumley House in 1992 to give brain-injured survivors “hope for getting a second chance at life,” she said. The idea for the center was born after her daughter, Lori Beth, suffered a traumatic brain injury at age 14 from a car accident. The once vibrant girl had excelled academically and in activities such as ballet, cheerleading and horseback riding. After the accident, she was left unable to eat, walk or talk. Barrett looked for a facility to provide comprehensive rehabilitation and recovery for her daughter, but finding none, she took on Lori Beth’s care herself and established the Crumley House to meet what she saw as a huge need in the entire region.

From its humble beginning as a daytime rehab center in Johnson City, Crumley House now sits on 15 countryside acres and includes the large main facility with a residential wing and two five-bedroom cottages for the step-up program. The center serves an average of 30-35 clients, and has a staff of about 30. Currently, 180 people are on a waiting list.

The Polynesian Beach Party is Crumley House’s major fundraiser.

“It’s lots of fun and a great way to help our program and give back to the community and promote a program to help brain injured persons throughout the south,” said Barrett.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 15, for guests who wish to preview the many items for the live and silent auctions. At 6 p.m., the party begins and features live music from the band Kids Our Age and tunes by DJ Robbie Britton. A Polynesian-styled dinner will be served at 6:30, and after the party, guests can stay for a poolside dance. Sponsors are Ballad Health and Dermatology Associates as well as regional corporations and members of the community. Students from East Tennessee State University volunteer to help with the auction, cleanup and other needs.

Tickets sell for $125 and can be purchased online by visiting http://crumleyhouse.com/2018-polynesian-beach-party/ or by contacting Michelle Ferguson at (423) 257-3644, Ext. 7.

Donations and sponsorships are also welcome. All proceeds will benefit brain injury survivors.

To learn more about Crumley House, visit crumleyhouse.com.

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