Healthy appetites prevailed for two Johnstown organizations, which both were raising money for important causes.

Healthy appetites prevailed for two Johnstown organizations, which both were raising money for important causes.

Both the American Legion Post 254 and the Church of the Ascension youth group held Pancake Day events March 16. While the concurrent scheduling was inadvertent, both organizations reported the day was generally successful, based on attendance. Neither organization had final revenue or attendance totals ready by ThisWeek's press time, though.

"It went well," Post 254 Commander Bruce Tolle said. "As a matter of fact, the community really came through for us. I don't have the absolute total yet, but the event definitely brought in over twice as much as in the past.

"It was quite gratifying, and I breathed a sigh of relief when it became apparent that we were going to do at least as well as usual," he said. "We've known that our Legion post had a lot of community support, but the outpouring response to our 'cry for help,' so to speak, was almost unbelievable. I even had some people who contacted me and said they couldn't attend but wanted to know where they could send a donation."

Church of the Ascension youth group leader Lauren Bogner didn't say much, only that "our pancake day went fine – not as well as expected, but still good."

She said previously that the youth group was forced to sponsor its event on the same day as the Legion's because the youth group was under deadline to raise money to attend the National Catholic Youth Conference in Indianapolis this November. Bogner said the cost per student and chaperon to attend is $500. The initial deposit of money was due March 22, and the youth group was pressed for time to deliver the deposit on time.

Tolle said that once Legion members realized the scheduling conflict, they initiated an all-out blitz to attract attendance. He said Post 254 members annually spend many hours with community projects and generally contribute $10,000 to $12,000 into Johnstown and its surrounding areas. Other Post 254 annual fundraisers include collection and recycling of aluminum cans, operating concession stands during the annual July 4 fireworks and local American Legion baseball games, a raffle to benefit "Gifts for Yanks (VA hospital patients)," and another pancake breakfast in November.

Post 254's next project is an Easter egg hunt March 30 for children ages 1-9. It will be on the Johnstown Recreation Center grounds. Registration begins at 12:30 p.m., with the hunt starting at 1 p.m.