** Come to West Virginia!

The Mountain State Council of the Blind will hold its convention Sept. 17-18, at the Wingate Inn in Charleston. This year's theme is "The Future Is Now." Some highlights for the upcoming convention include a student seminar on Friday afternoon. There will also be an exhibit area with lots of products to check out. On Friday evening we will dine at Mama Mia's Italian Buffet. Live entertainment and social will follow.

On Saturday we will hear from Chuck Huss on low-vision driving, Darren Burton from AFB Tech, Marcia Springston on "Pottery as a Blind Individual," and finally our annual business meeting and banquet. And don't forget to check out the auction! It will be held after ACB president Mitch Pomerantz's keynote speech.

To make your room reservation, call the Wingate Inn at (304) 744-4444. Rates are $89 plus tax for two people per room. MSCB has reserved a block of rooms; to get the convention rate, call before Sept. 3.

For more information, call Glen Pinkard, convention committee chair, at (304) 822-7175.

** Arkansas Awards Scholarships to Nine Blind Students

The Arkansas Council of the Blind makes scholarships available to blind students in Arkansas in the amount of $1,000 each. The Northwest Chapter awarded six scholarships from the Roger Eagle Scholarship Fund, and the state organization awarded three, for the 2010-2011 school year. This will be the last year for the Roger Eagle Scholarship Fund. The Arkansas Council of the Blind will continue annual scholarship awards as long as the finances are in place.

** Mid-Tennessee Revs Things Up with a Poker Run

On May 22, the Mid-Tennessee Council of the Blind (MTCB) tried a new way to rev its fundraising efforts: they held the first Braille Poker Run.

The chapter publicized the 112-mile poker run to motorcycle clubs and at motorcycle shops. People registered and paid their entry fees at the starting line, then made three stops along the route before making their way to the finish line. At all stops the riders drew a card from a print/braille deck and had their tally sheet marked in print and braille. There were also opportunities to purchase additional hands as well as 50/50 tickets along the way. MTCB members were stationed at each stop to do the brailling and to cheer the riders on. Some were even brave enough to hop on the back of a motorcycle!

At the end of the run, there were cash prizes, one for the best hand and one for the worst. The first 50/50 ticket won half the amount collected. More than a dozen prizes were drawn for items generously donated by the motorcycle shops throughout middle Tennessee.

It was a lot of fun and we are already making plans to expand our efforts for next year. So if your group is tired of doing the same old fundraisers, consider revving up your efforts with a braille poker run! For more information, contact Dan Dillon at (615) 874-1223 or via e-mail, [email protected]

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