In a few short weeks, Passavant Hospital’s annual Auxiliary Bazaar will be upon us again. This community tradition has deep roots in history, and will once again take place on November 7th and 8th this year as they raise funds that are then re-invested in helping others. For many, this beloved event is a precursor to the holiday season.
It all began with the Passavant Auxiliary, which was founded 118 years ago in 1896. The goal of the organization is threefold: to purchase necessary items for the hospital, to provide scholarship funds for employees looking to further their medical education, to offer outreach and promote community education.
In recent years, they’ve done just that. A fully-equipped ambulance was purchased last year, thousands of dollars in scholarships were administered, and the hospital offers on-going community education courses, helps with the Central Illinois Blood Bank, and even has a political action committee.
The Bazaar is a slightly newer event, however. Beginning in 1956, the event is celebrating its 58th anniversary this year and is full of entertainment, gifts and crafts for sale, food, and more. The event takes place in Passavant’s main lobby and several meeting rooms, as well as the gift shop. Vendors were added in the year 2007, and have expanded the event to include even more options for attendees and shoppers.
On opening day, Dr. Lilpop will be playing piano music at 2:45 pm, and the event officially begins at 3:00. There will be a food section with lots of treats for sale: frozen goods (like cinnamon rolls, soups, and appetizers), baked treats (pies, cookies, cakes), and all kinds of handmade crafts (woodworking, cards, knitting, Scentsy products, and more.)
Aside from those offerings, you can also expect to find great raffle prizes with baskets for all kinds of interests. Sports tickets, golf packages, a 42” television, American Girl dolls—you name it—you can win it. There are 18 packages up for grabs this year. The Bazaar also boasts a delicious luncheon—and this year’s menu is ham & Swiss Florentine.
For the little ones, Santa will be making a visit at the “Breakfast with Santa” (complete with a Frozen theme!) at 9 am in the Passavant cafeteria on Saturday. Kids are encouraged to wear hats and gloves and come along for crafts, story time, and a chance to get in a good word with Santa. Tickets should be purchased beforehand through the hospital—and often sell out quickly.
This event wouldn’t be possible without the support of the Auxiliary volunteers and donors. Whether it’s by donating time during the Bazaar or baking treats to be sold, this project takes many participants to come together each year. The Auxiliary now has over 600 members—and is open to anyone who wants to join. Lifetime membership is $150, or annual membership is $10/year. Don’t forget: November 7th and 8th, stop by Passavant for the annual Bazaar (and get your Christmas shopping started early!)