My turn

Lansing organization to grant scholarships

2013-03-24T00:00:00Z Lansing organization to grant scholarshipsCarrie Steinweg Times Columnist nwitimes.com
March 24, 2013 12:00 am  • 

The Lansing Old Timers organization will be awarding six, one-time grants of $1,000 or $500 to three male and three female high school seniors who have participated in a Lansing Old Timers sponsored program.

Applicants must be graduating high school seniors enrolled in or accepted by a two- or four-year college or university with at least a "B" average on their latest transcript, and have participated in a school athletic program. Grants will be awarded by lottery to all eligible applicants.

Visit LANSINGOLDTIMERS.COM for an application, which must be completed and returned by May 1 to: Lansing Old Timers, c/o Frank Kiefor, P.O. Box 133, Lansing, IL 60438

American Idol finalist performed in Lansing

Phil Stacey, a top five finalist from season 6 of "American Idol," performed a benefit concert for PASS (Pregnancy Aid South Suburbs) at Bethel Christian Reformed Church in Lansing earlier this month. I immediately liked the U.S. Navy vet when I saw him on the show auditions. I liked him even more after seeing him in the show (especially on Bon Jovi night.) Besides having a wonderful voice, he’s a talented musician who played guitar and piano during his show. He’s also a songwriter and his song “Old Glory” is a patriotic tune he performed at the concert that I have been listening to over and over.

As the son of a minister, he also frequently performs gospel tunes, as he did that night, including an outstanding a cappella verse of “Amazing Grace.” He shared a couple of inspiring stories. One was about his college days when he was so poor he hadn’t eaten for a couple of days. Following some prayer, he went to a grocery store and filled his cart with no clue on how he’d pay for it. As he was in the checkout line, his aunt walked through the doors, insisting on paying for his groceries.

The other story led up to a song he’d written called “You Are Not Shaken,” about an incident when he was 16 and an armed robber stole his car. The gunman had held a gun to Stacey’s head, but then drove off without shooting him. He learned later as the FBI investigated there had been about six previous auto thefts by these suspects and at every scene there was a dead body, yet somehow Stacey wasn’t harmed during the theft.

If you haven’t heard his music, check out his website PHILSTACEY.COM.

Dance for Disney raises $15,000

Earlier this month a fundraiser took place at Memorial Jr. High for 11-year-old Micah Steele. It was organized by Bridgett Anderson Annicks from Oak Glen School, who was Steele’s first-grade teacher. Steele was diagnosed with cancer while in her class and recently he’s had a setback with news that his cancer has spread. Annicks held the fundraiser so that Steele and his family, which includes four siblings (one is a twin), could take a trip to Disney World. As a Zumba instructor, she called upon other instructors to help out and had a big dance party with a bake sale and lots of raffles. Many of her fellow Oak Glen teachers helped out at the event.

This was a cause close to my heart because Steele was in class with two of my boys and I recall what a sweet, polite kid he is. Actually four of my sons were lucky enough to have Annicks for a teacher and I can’t praise her enough for all the hard work she does in the classroom. She’s also done so much out of the classroom for the Steele family by tutoring Micah at home, visiting him in the hospital and being a great support for the family. It was wonderful to see so many people come together to help out and enough was raised that the family should be able to spend some quality time together on their trip.

The opinions are solely those of the writer. She can be reached at csteinw@yahoo.com.

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