The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

April 4, 2014

Limestone Lock-Up raises $40K

Male counselors for special-needs camp

ATHENS — The roundup of dozens of local business and community leaders on Thursday reeled in $40,420, following the first-ever Lock-Up fundraiser held in Limestone County.

“My reaction was utter shock when we totaled the donations because this was a first-time event for the area and Athens is a somewhat small town,” said Terri Wilson, executive director for the MDA regional office in Birmingham. “You hear a lot of bad news so it always amazes me to hear about the good hearts and generosity of people.”

Wilson said MDA raises money for 43 different neuromuscular disorders, including Lou Gehrig’s disease.

After agreeing to be “arrested” for the charity program, the jailbirds spent the weeks leading up to their simulated incarceration collecting donations through their individual fundraising websites. MDA officials set bond at $1,600 for each charity inmate, with each having six more weeks to bring in more donations.

Among the 100 luminaries participating, three have already reached or exceeded their goal. Teresa Carroll of NuAngle leads the pack with $2,120, followed by Mary Ware of Catfish Cabin II with $1,690 and Athens State University’s Evan Thornton at $1,600.

Bail money for campers

The bail amount represents the cost of sending two children to the MDA’s special-needs summer camp at Lake Martin in Alexander City, according to Wilson.

“We have several campers from (North Alabama),” Wilson said. “The camp is 100 percent handicap-accessible, with a one-to-one ratio of camper to counselor.”

She said the association has a specific need for male counselors for the getaway at Camp ASCCA, with a range of activities geared toward children ages 6-17 with neuromuscular diseases.

“The campers can zip-line, swim, fish, horseback ride and tube, anything children would get to do at summer camp,” she said. “What we are really in need of are male counselors 17 or older.”

Counselors are volunteers credited with 120 service hours, reporting to camp for orientation on June 21. They must undergo a background check and complete an application with references and provide their own transportation.

For more information about applying for a counselor position, contact Shea Wiggins at 205-823-8191 or To learn more about Camp ASCCA, visit


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