Bars team up to send girl to camp

Three area pubs raising cash so autistic girl can attend program

Three Clintonville-area taverns are planning fundraisers to help send a 5-year-old area girl to a summer camp for children who have autism.

Patrick J's Bar & Grille, Club 20 and Woody's Sports Club have joined forces to help send Kristen Richmond's daughter, Georgia, to a Haugland Learning Center summer day camp for children with autism spectrum disorders.

The six-week program offers activities in music, art, social skills, swimming lessons, physical education and daily living skills.

Students will participate in weekly field trips to encourage engagement with people and activities outside the autism community.

The camps costs $1,600. Jennifer Tanner, a bartender at Patrick J's, 2711 N. High St. in Clintonville, and one of the fundraising effort organizers, said Georgia does not qualify for any special funding programs to attend.

Organizers said any funds raised above the summer program tuition for Georgia will be donated to the Autism Speaks program to help others.

Richmond, a former bartender at Woody's, 2933 Olentangy River Road, is a sales representative for RNDC General in Columbus, a distributor of wines and spirits.

Tanner and other organizers of the fundraising effort said professionals in the autism community recommend 25 hours a week of intervention and therapy for children with autism.

Georgia attends a Columbus City Schools special-needs preschool every weekday for a half-day.

Education officials say children with autism tend to regress during breaks from the intervention programs, especially during the summer.

That's why the trio of taverns is holding the fundraisers, Tanner said.

An event at Patrick J's will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. Wednesday, April 30.

Tanner said she and guest bartender Meredith Rea will donate all of their tips to Georgia.

There also will be a 50/50 raffle, and prizes donated by beverage companies and other businesses will be auctioned.

Club 20, 20 E. Duncan St., will hold a darts tournament to help Georgia at 4 p.m. May 10.

Bonnie Gehrig, a manager at Club 20, said half of the $10 entry fee for the tournament will be donated to the effort, and there also will be raffles and door prizes.

A fundraiser at Woody's is planned for 3 p.m. May 18 and will include raffles and prizes as well.