St. Mary’s Auxiliary revives fundraising cookbook

Kevin Bunch
From left, St. Mary's Auxiliary members Idella Abbott, Karen Weishuhn, and Betty Kolevar look through the new St. Mary's cookbook.

By Kevin Bunch
Staff Writer | news@arenacindependent.com
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STANDISH — The St. Mary’s of Michigan Standish Hospital Auxiliary, looking for a new way to raise funds for the hospital, revisited an item not used in over 30 years: a cookbook.

On May 1, the auxiliary officially released “Sharing Our Best,” a cookbook consisting of recipes from hospital staff, auxiliary members, and local community members.

Karen Weishuhn, chairwoman of the cookbook committee, said the idea came about when a group of auxiliary members were discussing different projects to raise funds back in 2010.

“I had just got in my possession of an old auxiliary cookbook from 1976,” Weishuhn said. “So we said, what about a cookbook project?”

St. Mary’s spokeswoman Holly Bender said all of the original 1976 recipes were included in the new cookbook, alongside new recipes primarily from the hospital staff and auxiliary members.

Weishuhn said the book had about 400 recipes in total, with 75 of those being from the original cookbook.

“I love looking at the ’76 recipes, since I know those members,” Weishuhn said. “A lot of them have passed on since then, but it’s nice to see their recipes preserved.”

Auxiliary member Idella Abbott said the book also featured an index where a reader can look up recipes by their creator. The book itself is split into different sections based on the type of dish being presented.

Once the recipes had been compiled, Weishuhn and co-chairwoman, Linda Seidel, went through it and made sure everything was accurate and edited correctly before sending it away to be professionally printed by Morris Press Cookbooks.

“Countless hours were put into the development of the book by several people,” Bender said.

The book is being sold through the St. Mary’s gift shop, which is operated by the auxiliary, for $13. Bender said the gift shop serves as a fundraiser for the auxiliary, which in turn donates those funds toward the hospital to purchase new equipment and technology.

The shop usually sells things that are not readily available elsewhere, such as jewelry and the cookbook.

Weishuhn said even though younger people may prefer to look up their recipes online, cookbooks are their own kind of keepsake.

“One of my favorites is one is an old cookbook my grandmother gave me as a wedding gift,” Weishuhn said.

Bender added the auxiliary is always looking for new volunteers interested in helping out at the gift shop and on other auxiliary projects.

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