KALISPELL — Volunteers with the Bigfork Ladies Service Club come together each summer to make thousands of huckleberry milkshakes serving hungry customers at the Northwest Montana Fair in Kalispell.
Bigfork Ladies Service Club Vice President Arlene Wilson said funds from these milkshakes and other fair-food favorites are donated to charitable organizations across the Flathead Valley.
“We serve several thousand huckleberry milkshakes, we grossed over $34,000 last year selling huckleberry milkshakes, hand dipped corn dogs and hamburgers and French fries,” said Wilson.
The service group recently donated two checks totaling $1,500 to the Save a Sister Initiative and ALERT Air Ambulance organization at Kalispell Regional Medical Center.
Save a Sister’s goal is to advance breast cancer awareness by improving women’s access to screening and helping patients who may be uninsured or under insured.
Bigfork Ladies Service Club President Kim Rose said donating to Save a Sister is always a top priority.
“We know we need the healthcare, we need to make sure that we’re are being checked regularly so this is one of our top of the list organizations that we like to sponsor if we can,” said Rose.
Established in 1975, ALERT provides critical care and emergency helicopter rescue services for those in need in northwest Montana.
Bigfork Ladies Service Club Vice President Arlene Wilson says Alert is used often in the Flathead Valley and wants to make sure the services continue for the coming years.
“ALERT has responded to calls in our community numerous times, a matter of fact my father was a flight recipient a number of years ago and we just want to see that service continue,” said Wilson.
Kalispell Regional Healthcare Mammography Manager Holly Apple said charitable donations to Save a Sister are needed to keep the program going strong.
“They understand that even though we might be OK with paying medical bills, we recognize that there's a lot of people that just cant,” said Apple.
Since the fair, the Bigfork Ladies Service Club have distributed more than $15,000 to 14 charitable organizations in the Flathead Valley.