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Cogswell Hall Benefit Race to Fund a Great Program

Needless to say, the Saturday morning/afternoon conference at MetroHealth was quite heavy from an emotional standpoint so by the time that Saturday night came around, we needed both a break and some fun so we found these things at "A Night at the Races" for the benefit of Cogswell Hall which was held at UAW Hall #1005 on Chevrolet Blvd. in Parma. It was good that it was held in such a big structure because maybe 200 people turned out for it. We were warmly welcomed by Ms. Diana Cyganovich, Cogswell Hall's Executive Director; Ms. Sarah Mahue, Board Member; and Ms. Cindy Rios, Development and Marketing Manager all of who worked very hard to put this event together.

We wanted to attend this event because we respect the work that Cogswell Hall does. As the program for the evening explained, "Cogswell Hall offers quality affordable housing to low income individuals in a historic building in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood. Residents pay 30% of their income towards rent, and by signing a lease, have the rights and responsibilities of any renter...Each resident is offered the opportunity to develop an individualized Services Plan that meets their immediate needs and helps them set and attain short and long term goals."

An affair like this is pretty much like an actual horse race because attendees go to a window and bet (usually $2.00) on a horse but instead of the animals actually being there, a DVD of an actual race is randomly chosen and played on a wide screen as everyone cheers for the horse that is wearing the number of the horse that they bet on.

Attendees have the opportunity to "buy" (for usually $125.00 or so) a horse and to name it so many of them have colorful names like "Two Bacons and a Ham," "Comfortably Numb," and "Just Call Me Lucky."

We did not win at all that night but we came close when the horse that we bet $2.00 on in the 4th race named "Finishes Last" was ahead for most of the race, and our heart was pounding -- but it fell behind in the last length. So "Finishes Last" didn't finish last, but s/he finished second. Unfortunately only first place paid out money; usually between $5.00 and $10.00.

We had a wonderful time and plan to attend this fundraiser again next year. We might even buy a horse and name it "The Immigrant's Way" on behalf of Ms. Margaret W. Wong.

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