The Alexandria Neighborhood Health Services, Inc. raised nearly $48,000 at the sixth annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta last Thursday.
The event was held at Jack Taylor's Alexandria Toyota showroom and featured a silent and live auction and food from 21 Alexandria restaurants.
"This is an excellent event," said Beth Knisley, cochair of the planning committee for the event. "It's like having two Cinco de Mayos at one time."
The silent auction featured a week in a cliff-side villa in Greece, which caught the attention of Councilman Paul Smedberg. "That looks fabulous," Smedberg said. "And this is such a good cause. The Arlandria Clinic provides a needed service. Many people who don't have insurance depend on the staff at the clinic for their healthcare. I am happy to support ANHS," he said.
Other items of interest included trips to Pawley's Island, Rehoboth and Bermuda; a fishing trip on the Chesapeake Bay; a vacuum cleaner; a day of beauty at Elizabeth Arden; gift certificates to restaurants and a variety of gift items.
Vice Mayor Redella S. "Del" Pepper brought her checkbook along but hadn't decided exactly what she wanted. "It's such a worthwhile cause," she said. "The clinic is truly doing good work. It provides healthcare to people who would not otherwise be able to afford it."
ALL OF THE PROCEEDS from this event will benefit the Arlandria Clinic, which has just become a full service, federally designated Community Health Center. "The clinic will serve many more people than it has been able to serve in the past," said Mayor William D. Euille. "They expect over 10,000 health care visits this year, including providing health care to more than 1,000 children under the age of five. It's a great facility and we in the city are proud of the work the staff does and proud to support it."
The clinic is located at 3804 Executive Avenue in the Presidential Greens apartment complex. The group is looking for a new facility and had been hoping to lease the property that is now occupied by Bare Feet Shoes at the corner of W. Glebe and Mt. Vernon Ave. That possibility no longer exists.
"We do want to remain in Arlandria because that is where many of our clients live," Knisley said.
ANHS is now exploring other options.