Skip to content

The 2024 Spring Benefit was a success

The silent auction item named "Woof"
Picture of Julie Hahnke
Julie Hahnke
Julie is the President of Cecropia Strong and is a stroke survivor, who was finally found after three days. She's a bagpiper, an author, a management consultant, and a nature enthusiast.

On April 18, The Landing Restaurant hosted Cecropia Strong’s 2nd Annual Spring Benefit, which raised money for our Therapeutic Riding Grants at Windrush Farm. Last year this event started as an emergency fundraiser. The North Andover farm lost $30,000 in teaching revenue when it had to shut down for six weeks in the spring. The event was successful and we decided to include a spring event this year. We raised $10,400 on the 18th!

Julie Hahnke, President and Founder of Cecropia Strong, kicking off the evening's festivities.
Julie Hahnke, President and Founder of Cecropia Strong, kicking off the evening's festivities.

The Therapeutic Riding Grants are given to financially-challenged adults with disabilities who want to take riding lessons. A 14-week riding lesson program would cost $980, but with the Cecropia Strong grant we cover $840 of it, and all that the person has to pay is $10 per lesson! And the attendance is growing – last year we offered 4 grants for the spring and 4 again in the fall. This spring we have 5 riders accepting the grants and we’ll have 7 grants in the fall.

A silent auction donation from one of our delicious partners, Harbor Sweets of Salem, MA. "Tess and Maude" is the painting displayed on the felt-lined box, which holds 24 pieces of Dark Horse Chocolates. This was won by Marie and Dino Keane.
A silent auction donation from one of our delicious partners, Harbor Sweets of Salem, MA. "Tess and Maude" is the painting displayed on the felt-lined box, which holds 24 pieces of Dark Horse Chocolates. This was won by Marie and Dino Keane.

The evening of the 18th started with our Silent Auction, which showcased 11 wonderful gifts, followed by a delightful dinner. Then we had random drawings for lots of Boston University gear (we called that Terrier Madness), followed by our Pony Up! The autioneer was Brad Hildt, a Windrush Board member. Generous donors pledged $3,000 if we could raise that much again in the Pony Up! We raised $3,500, which brought up to $6,500 – we were all smiles!

Jeanne Sparrow, Cecropia Strong Board member, in the foreground surrounded by attendees.
Jeanne Sparrow, Cecropia Strong Board member, in the foreground surrounded by attendees.

You might also enjoy