This year's dinner will be held on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013 at the Pierce City Armory in Pierce City. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m., and dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m.
The meal will be catered by Cox Monett Hospital's Food and Nutrition Services Department. The menu will consist of a garden salad, barbecued chicken, baked potato salad, fire-roasted vegetables, sugar-free apple pie and a drink.
Those who will be serving as celebrity waiters and waitresses will be dressed in apparel showcasing their favorite sports team. Dinner guests are encouraged to wear the same.
This year's group of servers includes: Bill East, Judy Carver, Debbie Blinzler, Mike and Phyllis Garrett, Mary Stluka, Karon Hawkins, Katrena Bowling, Becky Eggleston, Brenda Woods, Glenda Hemphill, Naty Apostol, Mark Holland, Linda Carr, Sharon Ridenour, Carol Heller, Shane Anderson, Donna Beckett, Jeannie Swank, Marie Medlin, Jeanne Ann Camp, Dr. David and LouEllen Honeycutt, Stacy Dotson, Paula Brown, Angela Matthews, Jill Jamieson, Shari Rhea and Leonard Witt.
In addition to dinner, Dining for Diabetes includes a silent auction, a 50/50 drawing and a live auction that follows the meal. Last year, the event netted a record $27,000. To date, Dining for Diabetes has raised $150,000, which has been used to provide diabetes education classes, counseling and supplied to people who do not qualify for Medicare or Medicaid or do not have insurance.
"Today, 30 percent of patients being treated within the CoxHealth system have diagnoses of diabetes," said Nancy Ridgley, certified diabetes educator and director of Cox Monett Hospital's Wellness Center.
"If properly educated and managed, these individuals can lead full healthy lives," explained Ridgley. "A person who does not receive education on how to live with diabetes typically ends up in the emergency room or worse, suffering from one of the many complications of this disease."
Ridgley said requests for assistance are increasing in light of the economic times.
"I see a need more than ever," said Ridgley. "This last year, I've had more calls from the ER and doctors offices that patients are struggling because their husband lost their job or they no longer have insurance.
"These people are not calling me for a hand out; these are people in unfortunate circumstances," continued Ridgley. "These calls are coming from Social Services, the Barry County Health Department, doctors, Med-Surg and the ER who recognize there is an issue and call us to see if we can help."
Diabetes is an epidemic in the United States. The leading cause of Type 2 diabetes is obesity and the second leading cause is genetics.
"As people learn more about the disease, more people want to help," said Ridgley. "Dining for Diabetes has been successful, because of the generosity of the community. People see the need. They have a friend or family with diabetes, and they want to help."
Individuals and businesses can assist with Dining for Diabetes in a variety of ways. They can purchase tickets to attend the event, they can donate items for the auctions or they can become a corporate sponsor.
Tickets are $20 per person, and quantities are limited.
For more information about tickets, corporate sponsorships or auction items, contact Nancy Ridgley at 417-417-354-1280.