Flock of flamingos freeloading for funds
Appeal Staff Writer
Flamingo sightings have been reported throughout Dayton this past week and will continue flocking to our fair town throughout the month of June.
The flamingos are part of Dayton Curves’ fundraising efforts for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Florida team, in keeping with this year’s national theme “Relay Across America.”
Relay for Life takes place July 21 and 22 at Carson High School.
To date, the flamingos have been spotted at Dayton Riverside Veterinary Hospital on Dayton Valley Road, at Citizens for Affordable Homes, Inc. on Pinecone Road and most recently at on Yellowjacket Drive. More landings are forecasted for the golf course and other locations next week, with more to come, said Linda Moulds, who with Cheryl Keir, is coordinating the “flamingoing.”
This is how it works: For a minimum donation of $10, anyone can elect to have another person’s house or place of business visited by the flock. Additional $5 insurance can be purchased to keep the flamingos from coming back to roost at the senders’ home or place of business. The birds will land for three to four hours before moving on to the next location, and are accompanied by a banner designed by Dayton artist Terry Benson.
Anonymity is guaranteed by the Audubon Society, according to the letter, which is posted on the door of each place that’s visited.
“We are extending this through June, because the response has been great,” Moulds said. “When we had our booth at Oodles of Noodles, we only booked through this week, because we didn’t want to oversell and not have the (logistics) in place.”
As an added benefit, photos are taken of the birds once they land and those photos will be sent to the home or business as a keepsake.
So far, the flamingos have been well received, with nary a soul upset about their temporary presence. And they’re less trouble than a goat, which the ladies at Curves originally considered.
“It’s all in fun and supports a good cause,” Moulds said. “It’s been amazing. You call people and they just laugh and say sure, put ’em on my lawn!”
Just after the flamingos landed on Tami Tingley’s lawn, she arrived home.
“I am so surprised but it’s the best thing and I know who did this and I appreciate it, my family appreciates it and my Dad will, too,” she said, emotionally explaining her father is in remission with cancer. “She (the anonymous sender) has the biggest heart; I have to call her.”
So far, in spite of the protection of the Audubon Society, Keir said, most recipients have guessed who their senders have been.
“But we don’t confirm anything,” she said.
To schedule a flamingo visit, or to purchase raffle tickets, call Curves at 246-9900, or visit them at 145 Highway 50 E.
• Contact reporter Karel Ancona-Henry at firstname.lastname@example.org or 246-4000.
Deadlines announced in the column in the May 18 issue of the Dayton Appeal were specific only to Curves’ Relay for Life Team. For participation or sponsorship information, or if you are a survivor who would simply like to be on hand to lend support for Relay for Life, contact Dorothy Wingard at 246-2499. Registration for Relay will continue until the event begins.