To give and to get: Community Involvement Day brings out the good in fair goers |

To give and to get: Community Involvement Day brings out the good in fair goers

Tom Sigler (left), Bill Mitchell, and Karen Mitchell of the Grass Valley Foothill Lions encouraged people Monday to participate in the organization's free eye screening. The Lions also collected used eyeglass frames and hearing aids.
Jennifer Nobles/

The Nevada County Fair is right around the corner, and organizers partnered with area nonprofits to give people a shot at discounted — or free — fair tickets in exchange for some goodwill.

Participating nonprofits offered half-off and free admission to the upcoming fair in exchange for donations during the day of giving. Those who donated blood via the BloodSource bloodmobile, for example, received a voucher for free admission for any day of the fair.

The donations accepted varied greatly. The Food Bank of Nevada County collected non-perishable food items, while the Cinderella Project collected gently used prom dresses for young women who might not be able to afford prom attire.

The Gold Country YMCA was present, accepting school and craft supplies, which YMCA director Aurora Packard said are in particular demand as students prepare to get back to school.

“Going back to school can be an exciting time,” said Packard, “but for some it can be daunting. We’re trying to lessen that stress by collecting school supplies and backpacks to give out.”

The Grass Valley Foothill Lions Club continued its tradition of collecting used eyeglasses, which are refurbished by inmates in Folsom Prison before being distributed to those in need.

Ted Schoppe of the Lions Club said they have received over 600 pair in the last month, but the organization is still in need of used hearing aids.

“The big (goal) is to push 2-1-1 services,” said Micah Cone of Nevada County 2-1-1. “We’re getting a lot of calls; CodeRed is huge right now. We are always available, 24/7.”

All participating nonprofit organizations accept donations throughout the year.

The Nevada County Fair takes place Aug. 8-12.

Jennifer Nobles is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at or 530-477-4231.

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