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Seeing Red

Supervisors honors Red Hatters for fund-raising effort.

The April 25 meeting of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors was more festive than usual, as 25 members of the Totally Eccentric Adventurous Red Hatters of Vienna were recognized for raising $25,000 for the North West Center Women’s Shelter.

Last fall, the group made and sold calendars featuring more than a dozen members of their club wearing slightly more than the day they were born.

Inspired by the movie “Calendar Girls,” where a group of women bare everything to raise money for a friend whose husband was seriously ill, the TEA Red Hatters were working to raise money to buy sleeping bags and provide funding for a battered women’s shelter in Fairfax County.

More than 3,000 calendars later, their mission has been accomplished. The women presented the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors a check for $25,000 on April 25, the profits they received after paying for the production of their calendars. The money will be used to cover expenses the shelter incurs in taking care of women, teenagers and children and the services they provide, and a $3,000 portion has been set aside to provide more sleeping bags next fall for the homeless throughout the county who will need some insulation from the cold winter nights.

“The calendars were sent to 36 states and eight countries, we really feel it circled the globe,” said Shirley Jackson, Queen Mother of the group. “People who received the calendar as a gift would e-mail us and ask to buy a few more to give as gifts. I consider myself very lucky that I could do this, but if my girls had not stepped up to the plate, it couldn’t have happened.”