~ Jay Ebert
Helping the Community and Making it Fun
In Whatcom County, there are many events and then there is one that stands out as a star when it comes to the lives it has touched, the people it has brought together, the friendships it has created and the money that has been raised and returned to this community.
The Chelsey Ebert Celebrity Weekend has been doing just that. It started out as a memorial golf tournament with friends and family in 2008 and from there, with the added coordination of the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce in 2013, grew to become the celebrity event that raised hundreds of thousands of dollars. All in the name of a Ferndale High School student, who passed away from cancer in 2007 at the young age of 16; Chelsey Rae Ebert. Her final simple wish was to have a scholarship in her name for Ferndale High School Senior girls in volleyball and basketball.
What happened over the next ten years is two became four and four became eight and Ferndale became Whatcom County and the final total of scholarships raised by this event topped $100,000 and over 100 scholarships. Not a bad accomplishment when you think that it also raised money for Seattle Children’s Hospital’s oncology department, Whatcom County Make-a-Wish, multiple law enforcement agencies, new concussion helmets for Ferndale High football along with backboards, score boards, team uniforms, softball teams, and a multitude of other charities and organizations in Chelsey’s name.
So why would there even be a consideration of ending this wonderful event? Because it’s time. Because the family is ready to remember Chelsey in new ways. Private ways. The Family Trust will continue to provide those Ferndale scholarships in Chelsey’s name and as this is written, is anxiously awaiting the final legacy. There will be a remodel of the Bellingham St. Joseph’s Hospital Emergency Room waiting area for children of all ages in Chelsey’s name.
When wondering what the best way would be to do something that the family felt would make the biggest difference for the longest period of time, the decision became clear; design a waiting room for kids who are there dealing with stressful situations and give them a place that will help them feel normal and comforted. The new area, soon to be depicted here, will encompass an area for coloring, large murals of the sports that Chelsey loved, TV’s with kid friendly shows, and areas for quiet reading or using personal computers.
Knowing that none of this would have been accomplished without the support of community and friends, the Chelsey Ebert family would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who volunteered, attended, donated, and supported this event in any fashion, for their generous support. It has taken what was a small wish and turned into a star, forever shinning in our lives.