NORTH CREEK - It seems fun can be intertwined with good works, as nearly 100 local residents gathered at the Copperfield Inn Saturday to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis research and education at the fourth annual Elizabeth Nash Foundation dinner and auction.
"With CF kids living much longer they are now going to college and it is only right that we provide scholarship money for their education," ENF Foundation founder Jim Nash said. "Last year we gave away over 50 scholarships to kids across the country."
Nash's daughter was a Johnsburg graduate who died in 2003 at the age of 33 because of Cystic Fibrosis.
"She was determined that her life was going to count for something," he said. "We decided that we should continue her work."
Elizabeth Nash had a PhD in molecular genetics and was chair of the CF Research Advisory Committee at the time of her death.
"She was so humble, people had a tendency to underestimate Liz," Nash said. "Lizzy was special."
After a first-class dinner and a round of Southern Comfort shots to loosen everyone's pocketbooks, the charity auction commenced.
Items up for bid included numerous overnight stays in area hotels, one-of-a-kind cherry Adirondack chairs and several cases of beer.
"Every penny we raise either goes to CF research or education," event organizer Nancy Beaudin said with tears in her eyes. "Every item up for bid was donated by local and regional businesses."
The value of each object was of secondary importance as locals opened up their hearts and pocket books to support the cause.
"Our objectives are two-fold," Nash said. "Last year we began sponsoring two research fellowships for post docs who are interested in working on CF."
Nash said the CF is considered an "orphan disease" because the pharmaceutical companies can't afford to commit to developing specific treatments.
"With only 30,000 cases nationally, the cost of research and development would put them under," he said. "Instead CF patients have to piggy-back off of other diseases, using drugs made for something else that may help a specific ailment."
Anyone interested in more information about the ENF can visit www.elizabethnashfoundation.org.