A Will County farmer is breaking new ground in raising money for the American Cancer Society with one of the largest third-party fund-raising events in the state.
Dean Bettenhausen and his wife, Linda, will host the second Tractors for a Cure event on July 14 at the Beecher Fireman’s Park, Beecher.
Bettenhausen, a Will County Farm Bureau member, said his goal is to exceed last year’s total of $81,000 and 500 participants.
Two driving forces behind Bettenhausen’s efforts are his wife and their daughter, Annie, both of whom are cancer survivors. Bettenhausen proudly shared that his daughter has been cancer free for eight years, but choked up when stating the event’s slogan: “Find a cure today and make cancer go away.”
A natural promoter, Bettenhausen expanded the event that started “as a potluck dinner” on his farm. “We have people flooding in to help us,” he said. “It’s unbelievable.”
Myra Kocsis, a spokesman for the American Cancer Society in Tinley Park, said she was not aware of any other ag-related cancer fundraiser and noted Bettenhausen’s was one of the largest third-party fundraising events. The money raised supports a Tractors for a Cure Inc. team that participates in the Relay for Life Peotone-Beecher-Monee fundraiser.
Tractors for a Cure T-shirts will be sold on July 14, but Bettenhausen recommended advance orders by June 15. Order forms are available through the Will County Farm Bureau or by e-mailing Joan Meier at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Raffle tickets also are being sold for several items, including a 1953 Farmall Super H.
Bettenhausen is accepting donations for silent and live auctions at the event. The day’s activities start at 9 a.m. with registration wristband and ticket sales. The admission price includes lunch and dinner.
The daylong event will offer many activities, including a pedal tractor pull, performances by several bands, a parade, tractor run, and a candlelight memorial service at 9 p.m.
A schedule and information are available by calling 708-243-8877, e-mailing email@example.com
, or by visiting a new website: www.tractorsforacure.com