Thursday, March 31, 2011
The new George & Wendy’s Corner Grill on Sanibel Island sets a fine example for community support of the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge. It donates five percent of all proceeds from sales of its art collection by expressionist Keys artist Stacie Krupa to the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge (DDWS).
On Feb. 11, owners George and Wendy Schnapp decided to turn their grand opening into the first creative cocktail auction benefit for the Society, donating 25 percent of auction proceeds for a grand total of $5,625. They intend to host these creative art auction parties twice each year.
“Stacie’s art represents the amazing wildlife living here within our refuge, and it is great to have her support, the support of the Corner Grill, and the overall community,” said DDWS Executive Director Birgie Vertesch. “The conservation work and education taking place within the refuge is well known, but many people don’t realize the true economic benefit of having a refuge in their community. For every dollar invested in the wildlife refuge, more than $40 is reflected in economic benefit to the area, not to mention the fact that the refuge helps to increase the property values on Sanibel and Captiva. The Corner Grill and so many other local businesses see the benefit of the refuge and we thank them for their support.”
On March 17 at Bailey’s IrishFest, George and Wendy’s Corner Grill provided two kegs of green beer which was served for free and donations were collected for the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society. In one hour and 15 minutes, the two kegs had been consumed and an additional $208 was raised for the Society.
As a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, DDWS works to support J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge’s mission of conservation, wildlife and habitat protection, research, and public education through charitable donations and Refuge Nature Shop proceeds.
To join DDWS and support the refuge with a tax-deductible gift, visit www.dingdarlingsociety.org or contact Birgie Vertesch at 239-292-0566 or firstname.lastname@example.org. CHELLE KOSTER WALTON