On Saturday, August 12th, a special walk was held at the Route 56 Campground near Vevay. The walk, organized by Butch Konkle and in tribute to his late wife, Jeanne Konkle, raised money for two important charities here in the county in the fight against cancer.
Saturday’s walk featured 139 participants, and raised $6,487 – and there is more money coming.
“I had set my goal at $2,500, and I already had that before it even started,” Butch said. “There were 139 people who signed the sheet to participate. There were 63 outsiders and 76 from the campground. It was a pretty good turnout.”
Butch said that he is splitting the proceeds between the Jeanne and Butch Konkle Fund in the Community Foundation of Switzerland County; and the ‘Keeping Pace’ Cancer Fund, which is also administered through the foundation.
“This was the first year; and it was tough on me,” Butch said. “You stand there all day and sign people up and tell them where to drop their donations; and then there are people wanting to hug you and shake your hand. There were a lot of good people out there on Saturday, we had a good day.”
Butch said that he had personal friends of his and Jean’s from around the state, from Greenfield, Indiana and Rush County and other places who drove down to be a part of this special day to raise money for this special cause.
“When I published it on the bulletin board down there (at the campground), that’s all you have to do,” Butch said. “If five people out of the 60 campsites see it, that’s all you have to tell, because all of the others will know it too.”
The Switzerland County Lions Club was on hand on Saturday providing sandwiches for the walkers. Butch purchased some hogs at the recent 4-H Fair livestock auction and donated them to the Lions Club; which in turn used them to feed the walkers and participants on Saturday.
“Paul Schmitt and them, they were really great,” Butch said of the Lions Club membership. “I bet I’ve had 50 thank you’s from people, because I had them. They like to see the money kept in the community, and I appreciate all their hard work.”
“I will always have this as long as I’m living at the campsite for Jean,” Butch continued. “Whether or not I want to keep having it for both funds, I guess next year it will be determined whether I have more help or not. If we have it again next year, I don’t know how we get any better than that. We collected all that money and you get all those people to come. I don’t know how you get any better than that.”
As successful as Saturday’s walk was, Butch said that the success is a result of the work of great friends and members of the community.
“The Route 56 Campground wants to thank all the people outside; and I want to thank all the people from the campsite and from the community,” Butch said. “Especially all of the people of Switzerland County for their attendance and their donations. Jean and I want to thank everyone.”