Lynn Cheek, left, and Joyce Dunigan, members of the Forbes' Pharmacy chili team.

Several local artists feature prominently in the live auction portion of the Texas County Memorial Hospital Healthcare Foundation Chili Cook Off to benefit Hospice of Care.

The live auction, a tradition at the annual fall fund-raiser for Hospice of Care, will be at 2 p.m. Saturday in the community building at the Houston Area Chamber of Commerce Fairgrounds.

McKinney Forge and Design Studio, owned by Charles and Marian McKinney of Bucyrus, has donated a handcrafted copper bird feeder, which is designed to hold sunflower seed and is mounted on a steel pole with spikes for placing the pole in the ground.

Houston artist Barbara White has donated an original watercolor. The piece is a landscape featuring boulders, trees and a dragonfly. The painting is matted and framed.

A one-of-a-kind queen size quilt has been made and donated by Peggy Berger Holder of Houston, Ann Berger of Kalamazoo, Mich., and Charlene Koppenol of Allendale, Mch. The quilt pattern is “Squarez in Squarez,” a traditional pattern with a modern twist.

Other donated items in the auction include a locally raised beef, pork and lamb, decorated Christmas tree, camouflage pop up ground blind, solar light, handmade afghan and additional handmade quilts.

The TCMH Healthcare Foundation is hosting the chili cook off for Hospice of Care this year. Jay Gentry, foundation director, hopes the it brings out new people, as well as people that have supported Hospice of Care in the past.

“Hospice of Care has a long tradition and well-known reputation for providing physical, mental and spiritual care for terminally ill patients and their family members in Texas County and the surrounding area regardless of their ability to pay for the services,” Gentry said. “Many people look forward to the annual hospice fund-raising event as a way to give back to a charity that has benefited them, their family or friends.”

Gentry noted that all the proceeds raised remain in Texas County to benefit area residents.

“Hospice intends to use some of the funds from this event to purchase two therapeutic air mattresses for use by hospice patients,” Gentry said. The mattresses are more than $2,000 apiece, and they provide extra comfort to patients that spend a considerable amount of time in bed.

Hospice also uses donations to purchase items for the two hospice patient rooms on the south and east wings at the hospital and to buy medication and supplies for patients. The foundation has a specific fund set aside for Hospice donations, and it is working with Hospice of Care to grow donations to the organization.

“Hospice of Care has touched many lives in Texas County,” Gentry said. “It’s an honor for the foundation to participate in bringing attention to and raising money for their cause.”

The chili cook off begins at 11 a.m. with chili tasting and activities throughout the day. Activities include celebrity chili judging, cakewalks, homemade pie auction, raffles of a rifle and tree stand and two bands: The Link Family and Kevin Lee and the Rebel Ridge Band.

The auction of donated items will culminate the day’s events.

For more information, contact Hospice of Care at 417-967-1260 or the healthcare foundation at 417-967-1377. Tickets are available at many locations across the county, including the TCMH Auxiliary Gift Shop.

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