ALTON - The Riverbend Community Center has a strong cast of volunteers, but three that were very visible both before and during the recent $25,000 Toy Giveaway were key people - Lucinda Lowe, Vicki Grover, and Daniel Nosce.

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The three were heavily involved in the planning of the Toy Giveaway and any other events at the Community Center.

The Community Center had been closed for a year and a half because of the COVID-19 Pandemic prior to Friday, November 19, the night of the open house.

Dwight Fowler of Hit ’N Run was the key donor in the $25,000 Toy Giveaway and has been a solid foundation for many of the Community Center activities.

Fowler was so excited to work with Riverbender Community Center John Hentrich on the Toy Giveaway.

Dwight and his wife, Teresa, both said: "Seeing the kids' eyes and smiles on their faces, that is our joy," they both said.

Hentrich said he feels “very blessed” to have the constant support from Fowler and Hit 'N Run and all three volunteers.

“Vicki and Lucinda have been volunteering here for about eight years,” John Hentrich, CEO of the Community Center, said. “They are both very dependent and dedicated and provide great support to me and the Community Center. They both have the kids and the programs close to their hearts.

“Daniel also has a real heart for the Community Center. He recruits so many friends to volunteer for the different programs and works hard with so many events. He plays a very important role in the Community Center and helps with many of the programs.”

Vicki Grover has been a key player in the Holiday Open House event over the years and is also on the advisory committee board.

“I have been volunteering for a little over eight years and been on the advisory committee for the community center,” Vicki said. “I help plan the holiday open house event and helped unload all the toys and plan it. I love the annual open house and the family events at the community center, both for the younger kids and middle school children.”

Lucinda is the president of the executive committee board for the Community Center. She started her volunteer odyssey when her daughter came to the center as a middle schooler after school. One day she came in and checked it out and John Hentrich encouraged her to come back and volunteer. She said it is very exciting to have the Community Center open again and just seeing the kids back in the center is "a really good feeling.”

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Lucinda said just seeing all the excitement of the kids and smiles on their faces when they receive free toys and visit Santa made her time enjoyable on open house night.

Daniel is an outreach coordinator for the Community Center and has been a volunteer for the past five years.

“It is great to see everybody’s faces and see everybody smiling and happy,” he said of the recent open house. “It is special this year to have the open house because we haven’t been open for a year and a half due to the pandemic."

Lucinda encouraged others to volunteer for the Community Center by visiting the website at:

https://riverbendercommunitycenter.org/

Or call the Community Center phone line at:

Riverbender Community Center

(618) 465-9850 ext. 212

or visiting the center at this location:

200 W 3rd St

Alton IL. 62002

Lucinda said volunteers and financial contributions are always needed for the center.

The Community Center is a 501(3) organization and always needs financial support to carry out its programs and overall mission.

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