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CVH picnic features beach-themed fun and games

Taylor Nisonder braves the cool weather to get dunked. -
Taylor Nisonder braves the cool weather to get dunked.
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ARLINGTON In spite of inclement weather, the Cascade Valley Hospital and Clinics invited their employees, patients, neighbors and anyone else who happened to be passing by to grab a plate and enjoy a day at the beach at their annual employee appreciation barbecue Aug. 15.
Terra Kelly, food and nutrition services coordinator for Cascade Valley, wandered the parking lot in bright tropical attire, fitting in with this years theme of a day at the beach for the free community cookout, which was also reflected in the casual and colorful outfits worn by most of her coworkers.
The beachside theme was dampened by the wet weather, but the sunny spirits of our attendees kept us warm, Kelly said.
Kelly explained that these barbecues are intended to thank each of Cascade Valleys employees for all the hard work they do, year round, while also sharing their appreciation with those employees families and the community. She elaborated that, in addition to the main barbecue during the day in Arlington, their clinics in Darrington and Smokey Point enjoyed smaller cookouts of their own. Cascade Valley Assistant Administrator Heather Logan, Community Relations person Kelly Penny and cook Aaron Mach also prepared and delivered a portable feast at midnight for their night staff.
We served approximately 250 employees, Kelly said. In addition to the staff, there were an estimated 75 families that joined the festivities. The rest were community members who have touched the hospital in some way, such as firefighters, paramedics, medical care providers, friends of employees and volunteers. She added that many of the hospitals regular cafe customers joined them for the barbecue as well, among them city and construction workers, and friends and family members of current and former patients.
Kelly elaborated that another goal for these barbecues is to let everyones inner child out, so that we can all have a good time.
In addition to the beach buffet and inflatable palm trees for decor, the event boasted a dunk-tank and a robo-surfboard, which Cascade Valley Hospital Foundation Director Joan Miles took a ride on, before tumbling off safely.
We enjoy being a part of this community, Kelly said. This is just one way that we can thank them.
The totals of food consumed at the Aug. 15 Cascade Valley Hospital and Clinics employee appreciation barbecue included 280 hamburgers, 200 hot dogs, 180 chicken breasts and 156 root beer floats.

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