Dillon Fighting a New Battle
Urbana Middle School sixth grader Dillon Papier is beloved in the greater Urbana community, well known for his contagious smile and love of baseball. For the past 11 years, Dillon has bravely fought Niemann-Pick Disease, Type C (NPC), an inherited metabolic disorder – sometimes called the childhood Alzheimer’s disease. He has endured countless tests and treatments and recently participated in an experimental drug trial at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which the family hopes will help other children inflicted with NPC.
For more than a decade, Urbana’s community has rallied to support Dillon. In February, Dillon was diagnosed with liver cancer, apparently unrelated to NPC, and on Feb. 19, surgeons operated to remove part of his liver and several tumors. Weeks of chemotherapy treatment will start soon and hopes are high for remission in the near future.
For more information, visit the Papier family’s website at www.dillonsfight.org, or the foundation site at www.nnpdf.org, or good wishes can be left on Mark Papier’s page on Facebook.
Local Scout Collects at Dream Dinners for Food Bank
Urbana residents Tracey Muragaki and Jamie Carr, owners of Dream Dinners in the Turning Point Plaza in Urbana, are helping a friend of the business while helping neighbors in need. They are now proudly displaying one of the coin collection boxes Boy Scout Beau Marwaha made for his Eagle Scout Project, to benefit the Greater Urbana Area Food Bank.
Dream Dinners helps customers prepare multiple home-cooked dinners to take home to enjoy later, and Marwaha is one of its employees. “We are so proud of Beau,” said Carr. “He has been a member of our Dream Team for over three years. Being in the food service industry, his project idea is dear to our hearts and we are honored to support Beau and the Greater Urbana Area Food Bank.” Donations by customers and guests of Dream Dinners are welcome to help the food bank. For more information on Dream Dinners, go to www.dreamdinners.com/frederickmd.
Having Fun while Staying Safe and Sane
Volunteers are already hard at work planning Safe and Sane, an event designed to entertain the Urbana High School class of 2015 on June 4, the night of graduation, from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. Seniors are encouraged to register as soon as possible. Volunteer parents of students of all grades are always needed before and during the all-night, alcohol/drug free event. Tax-deductible donations from local businesses and residents are also greatly appreciated.
Senior Steven Mikk recently won the second of four Safe and Sane raffles and took home a gift card to Chipotle as well as Valentine’s chocolates. Two more raffles will be held in the spring for all students who are registered for the event, which provides many activities and games plus plenty of food and drink all night. Raffles will be held throughout the event at the Frederick Indoor Sports Complex.
This month, a Safe and Sane fundraiser is scheduled at Chipotle on March 10 from 5-8 p.m. Vouchers are not required, just mention UHS Safe and Sane and the event will receive 50 percent of the sale. The next Safe and Sane planning meeting is Wednesday, March 4 at 7 p.m. in the UHS media center. “We encourage freshman, sophomore or junior parents to join us,” said co-leader, Kim Wolf. “Safe and Sane is an exciting event that the students look forward to from the time they enter high school. It’s a time for them to celebrate their successes and say goodbye to their fellow classmates.”
For more information, visit www.urbanasafeandsane.shutterfly.com, or visit its Facebook page.
Birthday Girl Chooses to Give Instead of Get
Urbana resident Autumn Lewert recently celebrated her fifth birthday, and as her family has done since she turned one, Autumn asked for charitable donations instead of birthday gifts. This year, $235 was donated to the Greater Urbana Food Bank, thanks to the generosity of the Lewerts, their family and friends. “I have many, many toys,” Autumn said, so instead of the money going to buy her more, it will help more than 185 local families in need.
Chris Lewert, owner of Urbana Dental Spa, and his wife, Tracey, said they are very proud of their daughter, and hope to continue the tradition with son Ashton, who turns one in April. “We have been able to donate to local charities like the food bank and the Frederick Rescue Mission in Autumn’s name,” said Tracey. “It has been a valuable lesson for her and we hope we can help to make sure everyone has what they need.”
Pop-Up Lab at Urbana Library
The Urbana Regional Library recently hosted a new, hands-on science and technology program for children. The Pop-Up Lab was open on Feb. 13 and 16, both days when school was closed, and allowed elementary-aged students to explore science with hands-on experiments. The first session, Vintage Technology, included forms of old-fashioned vinyl music plus the first Nintendo Gameboy. At Cup Architecture, library workers demonstrated the many things one can create just by using a stack of plastic cups. For more information on future events, call the library at 301.600.7000.