It was a bittersweet morning. Hundreds of cars lined up for a breakfast bag and great giveaways, but, most importantly, to support Maxine DeHart’s last hurrah as she retires her pajamas.
DeHart juggles many hats, including her stint as Kelowna city councillor.
She has been hosting the Ramada Hotel Drive-Thru Breakfast in support of United Way for 20 years.
“I’m sure I’m going to get a bit emotional but look at what’s going on,” DeHart said. “People were lined up at 5 a.m.”
DeHart says she wants to retire from hosting the event on a high.
“Everything has a best-before date. We thought to go out on a high at 20 years. We will have something going on next year, something different,” DeHart said.
As of 10 a.m. this morning, the event raised $110,053, with funds still coming in.
This includes a $20,000 donation from the Thomas Alan Budd Foundation as well as an anonymous donation matching all online funds raised up to $20,000.
Marianne Dahl, the marketing and events manager for United Way Central and South Okanagan/Simikameen, says the team is deeply moved by the community’s involvement this morning.
“We’d like to say thanks to Kelowna for all the incredibly generous people who donated online and patiently waited in line,” Dahl said. “A shout out to Maxine, the Ramada and all of the incredible sponsors and volunteers. This event would not happen without them.”
Dahl adds that all the costs of the breakfast have been fully covered by sponsors.
“One hundred percent of the proceeds go directly towards United Way and the community. Everything is donated,” Dahl said. “We’re just overwhelmed by the support.”
It’s not too late to get involved. Online donations are still being accepted.