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Building Homes! Rebuilding Lives! Home, Home on the Range with Habitat

Building Homes! Rebuilding Lives!
Home, Home on the Range with Habitat

"Home, home on the range
Where the deer and the antelope play
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word
And the skies are not cloudy all day."

Dr. Brewster M. Higley originally wrote those words in a poem called "My Western Home" in the early 1870's in Smith County, Kansas. It was first published in a December 1873 issue of the Smith County Pioneer under the title of "Oh, Give Me a Home Where The Buffalo Roam." The music was written by a friend of Higley's named Daniel E. Kelley. Higley's original words are similar to those of the song today, but not identical. The song was picked up by settlers, cowboys, and others and spread across the USA in various forms. The current version credited to John A Lomax was written in 1910.
In the early 20th century, it was arranged by a Texas composer, David Guion, who has often been mistakenly credited as the composer. It was officially adopted as the state song of Kansas in 1947, and is commonly regarded as the unofficial anthem of the American West. It is often performed in concerts and programs of American patriotic music, and often used in plays and films.
And, that is exactly what Habitat for Humanity of Washington County is planning to do for its major annual fundraiser. "Home, Home On The Range With Habitat" will be the theme for its 16th Annual Dinner and Auction.
The event will be held Saturday, March 21 at 5:00 p.m. in the ARCC Building of Hagerstown Community College. Tickets are available now at $45.00 per person! The event sells out every year, so order now to beat the March 6 cutoff deadline. Since this is a "western-themed" event, those attending are invited to come dressed in western attire, as those volunteers working the event plan to do. But whether you wear boots, jeans and sombreros, or arrive in normal clothes, your presence can help Habitat build another house.
And you can have a lot of fun mingling with hundreds of others, participating in both live and silent auctions, and playing games. And, you will be served an excellent meal by Leiter's Catering.
This year's auction items are exciting! There is a fishing trip on the Potomac with a guide! A full week's stay at Wintergreen Resort in the Blue Ridge Mountains! A pet pot-bellied pig! Seat cushions from past Superbowls! Beaver Creek Country Club membership! Weekend stays in Shenandoah Valley, The Woods, and The Inn at Blue Ridge Summit! Bonfire party with a hayride! Choice of 2 wedding dresses! Golf packages! Southwest Airline Tickets! Ski packages! Jewelry! Quilts! Pottery! Paintings! Custom Stained Glass! Your name in author Susan Donovan's next book plus 6 of her novels! Theatre and museum tickets for Hagerstown, Baltimore, Washington, DC, and Philadelphia! And many , many more! New items are coming in every day!
The $80,000 raised last year helped Habitat to continue building affordable housing for low-income families. This year's goal has again been set at $80,000. The homes are sold to qualifying families on a no-profit, no-interest mortgage. Families must put in 500-hours of "sweat equity" building on Habitat houses and participating in other Habitat projects alongside the Habitat volunteers. Dinner Auction is an exciting and fun method of supporting Habitat in its effort to build homes and rebuild lives.
Anyone wanting to order tickets for the auction dinner, or desiring more information on any phase of the Habitat operation , please call 301-791-9009.

William L. Bulla is a freelance writer residing in Washington County.

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