Not-for-Profit News
22nd Annual Square Dance Benefit For Camp Courageous PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Not-for-Profit News
Written by Becky Melchert   
Monday, 03 October 2011 12:03
Monticello, IA— On Sunday, October 9, 2011, the East Central Federation and Cedar Valley Callers Association will sponsor the 22nd Anniversary of the Annual Square Dance Benefit for Camp Courageous. The calling begins at 1:30 p.m. and ends at 4 p.m. in the main lodge at Camp Courageous.

Callers and cuers are invited from all over eastern Iowa and the surrounding areas. Dance clubs as well as individuals and couples are welcome to enjoy the afternoon dancing or just observing in the spacious camp lodge. Tours will be available for anyone interested in seeing all that camp offers including the camp train, the barn and the indoor swimming pool! Admission fee is a donation to camp. Participants are asked to bring along cookies, or a snack to share---beverages are provided.

Located near Monticello IA, Camp Courageous is a year-round recreational and respite care facility for individuals with mental and physical disabilities. The camp was built and continues to operate on donations, without government support, without formal sponsorship, and without paid fundraisers. The camp serves nearly 6,000 individuals with special needs annually.


Dinner highlighting Wild Harvest River Fish America's potential: Helping feed the hungry. PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Not-for-Profit News
Written by Narveen Aryaputri   
Monday, 03 October 2011 11:04

The Moline Commercial Club hosted a private dinner party televised and taped by NIPPON TV and Channel 4 news on September 26th. 2011.  The menu was designed to highlight the delicious and healthy wild harvested Carp from the Illinois rivers.

The aim of  the dinner and the televised  taping was to highlight the upward potential of  American business as well as the creation of  jobs by increasing wild harvested fish from our waterways. To this purpose the dinner was arranged to serve a variety of  dishes for those who had never eaten  ‘ the  fish called carp’ . The dinner was a huge success.  Chef Linda of the Moline Commercial Club prepared Stuffed Green Peppers, Lasagna, and Chili. The Chili was cooked in front of  the newscasters and reporters. All items were made with carp. Desserts were chocolate mousse and whipped cream on philo dough cups with fresh raspberry on top; and  chocolate, vanilla and raspberry cheesecake squares.

The advantages of  the carp is that the fish is NOT a bottom-feeder. It is healthy, and very easily digestible over some of the other fish and meat, and is low calorie, and tasteful: it actually absorbs the flavors of  the spices since it does not have its own taste. It is not a greasy fish. The carp has a blood line, which makes its consistency similar to hamburger meat or turkey, or chicken and it does not disintegrate in prepared dishes. It maintains a nice texture and consistency. It is substantial and is not flaky. Because it eats only plankton, it is a light and airy fish and stays on top. The comments were: we ate a lot of  food, but we do not feel heavy. Additionally, it is economical at half  to a third of  the price of  meat and most other fish.

In attendance at the dinner were the congressional office of Congressman Schilling and various members of The Moline Commercial Club.

The Moline Commercial Club is  looking to achieve three short term and long term goals:

1)      Remove the excess carp from the Illinois waterways, while still maintaining sustainability so the species are not endangered.

2)      Freeze and ship the wild harvest to countries overseas as well as the American market: both North and South America. An ideal conservative short term goal is 4 containers of  40,000 pounds per week.

3)      Make it available to the American families through awareness of  health advantages of  the carp, cooking techniques, and economics of  wild natural harvest, cost per family for a full meal as well as availability in local super markets and grocery stores.

Prepared dishes as well as smoked, raw mince and fillet can be purchased from The Moline Commercial Club.

Ready menus are:  Stuffed green peppers,  chili, lasagna, fillet with pasta with alfredo or tomato base sauce, fish balls, fish patties, and fish cakes.

Please contact 309-762-8547 to place your orders.  Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Additionally, raw uncooked fish may be purchased through the same number or email.

Niabi Zoo Hosts Wine Tasting and Art Expo to Raise Money for Elephants PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Not-for-Profit News
Written by Marc Heinzman   
Monday, 03 October 2011 08:05

Coal Valley, IL – September 23, 2011 – Niabi Zoo has announced an all-new and fun event to benefit the construction of a larger and more modern elephant exhibit. The new event, titled Wines for Wildlife & Art Expo: Presented by the Grape Life, is an after-hours wine tasting that offers attendees the chance to sample a variety of wines for a good cause. Attendees will enjoy music and appetizers in a fun and casual atmosphere. Wines for Wildlife & Art Expo: Presented by The Grape Life takes place on zoo grounds on Saturday, October 1, 2011, from 6:00 pm to 10:00pm.

“Niabi Zoo is extremely proud to be the only zoo in the state of Illinois to feature elephants as part of its collection,” says Assistant Zoo Director Marc Heinzman. “Our two Asian elephants, Babe and Sophie, are the biggest stars of the Zoo, both figuratively and literally. They deserve a larger and more modern habitat, and we hope to add a third elephant sometime after construction is completed.”

The estimated exhibit cost is close to $4 million, and Niabi Zoo is hoping to offset some of that cost with a variety of fundraising activities, such as Wines for Wildlife & Art Expo: Presented by The Grape Life. In addition to the wine tasting, the event will also feature an art gallery consisting of masterpieces from local artists and even zoo animals such as elephants, lions, snakes, and birds. “We have a lot of artists here at Niabi Zoo,” says Heinzman, “and they love to paint.”

Tickets for the event are $40 for zoo members and $45 for non-members in advance, or $50 for all at the gate. The Zoo is also selling Double Mangnum 4- packs of tickets at $150 for members and $170 for non-members. Call 309-799-3482 ext. 242 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to purchase tickets.

Monticello native releases book, portions of proceeds to benefit Camp Courageous PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Not-for-Profit News
Written by Charlie Becker   
Thursday, 22 September 2011 08:37
MT. PLEASANT, MICH. – A 1991 Monticello High School graduate and his wife have released a book of blog-inspired essays about their life with multiple sclerosis, and portions of the book’s proceeds will benefit Camp Courageous.

In their publishing debut, “Despite MS, to Spite MS,” Dan and Jennifer Digmann share personal stories of their journey—alone and together—coping with and rising above a disease for which there currently is no cure. 

Dan is the son of Monticello residents Roger and Nancy Digmann, and he currently lives with Jennifer in Mount Pleasant, Mich.

“We were quite overwhelmed when it first was suggested that we publish a book of our stories, but the more we thought about it we realized it was a needed step for us to take to increase MS awareness and help people to move forward with their lives,” Dan Digmann said. “We wanted to give back to Camp Courageous for everything it’s done for us and for everything it continues to do for the community and for the countless individuals with disabilities it serves year-round.” 

Combined Dan and Jennifer Digmann have taken on MS for nearly 25 years and together they demonstrate the extremes of how this disease impacts people so differently. Jennifer was diagnosed in 1997; Dan was diagnosed two years later. She has secondary-progressive MS, while his is relapsing-remitting. The couple was married in 2005. 

“While our life isn’t easy and we are always aware of our multiple sclerosis, we hope by sharing our stories we can comfort, educate and inspire you no matter what challenges you are facing,” Jennifer writes in the book’s foreword.

“Despite MS, to Spite MS,” will be sold locally at the Camp Courageous Gift Shop, which will be open during the annual Camp Courageous of Iowa Pancake Breakfast and Open House scheduled for 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25.

According to the National MS Society, more than 400,000 Americans have MS. Knowing these numbers makes it so much more amazing that Dan and Jennifer found each other in Michigan and continue to defy the odds they face together. 

In addition to maintaining a personal blog at, the Digmanns are regular contributors HealthCentral’s more than 35 sites provide clinical resources and real-life support to those with life-changing conditions and serves more than 16.4 million visitors each month.

“Despite MS, to Spite MS” also is available online at
In addition to Camp Courageous, portions of the book proceeds will benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (see

Addition to our Advisory Board: Attorney Douglas Cannon PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Not-for-Profit News
Written by Narveen Aryaputri   
Thursday, 22 September 2011 08:09
We are proud to announce the addition to The Institutes's Advisory Board of Douglas Cannon:
Attorney Douglas Cannon specializes in the area of  Entertainment law, and will be able to advise our Independent Scholars and Artists about the nuances of  publishing, the publicity of  originals works of Art, Intellectual Property Rights and any allied questions in the area of  Independent and original work. A member of  the prestigious Chicago Literary Club, Douglas has an extensive practice in law and is a writer himself, presenting his work frequently at the Chicago Literary Club.
Additionally, as we are growing, we have added a new email account which is linked to a Facebook and Twitter dedicated to The Institute. Scott Klarkowski, our Social Media and Public Relations Executive, whose addition to The Institute you are familiar with, is actively working on the Internet and social networking and of The Institute.
The added email is This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
We will be sending emails for our weekly and other announcements from this new email.  The email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it is still active, and will continue to be used by me.
Its exciting to see the unfolding of  The Institute occurring with all our joint support, good wishes and endorsements.

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